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3 9999 06544 667 4 








JUNE 30, 1976 



Water Parks Sewerage 

Water Parks Sewerage 































Lynnfield Water Dist. 




















































(Beyond the Water District the MDC furnishes 
the entire water supply for Chicopee, South 
Hadley Fire District No. 1 and Wilbraham, a 
partial supply to Clinton, Framingham, Leom- 
inster, Marlboro, Northboro and Southboro 
and an emergency standby connection for 


3 Districts 
2 Districts 
1 District 




*Bedford joined the Sewerage District in June, 1970, with sewage for part of the town handled through the town of Lexington 
under special contract. Holbrook became a member of Sewerage District in January, 1971, but is not contributing sewage to the 

**Woburn was admitted to Water District in August, 1972, and Wellesley in March, 1974, but neither is being supplied pending 
completion of Connections. 




Secretary of Environmental Affairs 



Associate Commissioners 



Secretary of the Commission 


Chief Engineer 

Executive Assistants 




General Counsel 


Highlights 3 

Water Supply 4 

Pollution Control 7 

Parks Development 1 1 

Recreation Activity 15 

Zoos 21 

Historic Sites 23 

Transportation 24 

Metropolitan District Police 25 

Organization 27 

Finance 30 

District Membership Inside Front Cover 

District Map Back Cover 



Chief Construction Engineer 

Engineering Division 

Superintendent of Police 


Director of Environmental Quality 


Director of Sewerage Division 

Chief Sewerage Engineer 

Director of Central Services 


Director of Water Division 

Chief Water Supply Engineer 

Director of Land Planning 

Director of Environmental Planning 

Director of Parks and Recreation 

(Incumbents as of 6/30/76) 

Publication of this Document Approved by Alfred C Holland. State Purchasing Agent 


Est Cost Per Copy $1 04 

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ZoSfmnertett/treet, Stations 02/0$ 

To His Excellency the Governor and the Secretary of Environmental Affairs: 

To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives: 

To the Honorable Mayors, Selectmen and Municipal Officials: 

To the Public of the Metropolitan Parks, Sewer and Water Districts: 

The Metropolitan District Commission submits herewith a report on activities and other pertinent 
data for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1 976, in accordance with the provisions of Section 1 00, 
Chapter 92 of the General Laws. 

This document is designed to provide a broad overview of MDC's accomplishments during 
fiscal 1976 and plans for the near future in providing vital regional services for nearly 2.5 million 
inhabitants of 54 cities and towns. 

It has been a productive year. The parks system's facilities, open space and recreation pro- 
grams are expanding to offer greater opportunities for wholesome activity. Water supply of high 
quality is dependably meeting existing needs, although new sources are required to meet growing 
demands. Significant progress in pollution control is being achieved, while a long-range program 
has been developed to meet new clean-water goals. Our police force has risen to the challenge of 
traffic problems, crime incidence and protection of widespread MDC property. Despite a substantial 
increase in these activities, there has been a reduction in debt, personnel and maintenance and 
operation costs. 

It is our hope that this report will bring greater understanding of MDC's efforts to satisfy basic 
needs, meet environmental goals and enhance the quality of urban life efficiently and economically. 

Respectfully submitted, 

John F. Snedeker 

Highlights of the Year's Activity 

Significant progress in developing regional facilities and 
services for improving the quality of life was accomplished by 
the Metropolitan District Commission during the fiscal year 
ending June 30, 1976. 

The wide-ranging programs affect 2,431,968 inhabitants 
of 54 cities and towns in Metropolitan Boston served by one or 
more of the three MDC districts — Parks, Water and 

Extensive development of the parks system is well on its 
way, highlighted by a construction start on a new 200-acre 
park reservation on the Mystic River Basin. Planning is pro- 
ceeding for a one-mile oceanfront park and rejuvenation of 
Revere Beach, developing a Belle Isle Reservation in East 
Boston and an urban park on the grounds of Chestnut Hill 
Reservoir in Brighton. Major renovation and development is 
progressing at Stony Brook Reservation in West Roxbury and 
Hyde Park and along Quincy Shore Drive at Wollaston Beach 
Reservation. Work has begun on restoring historic Fort Inde- 
pendence at Castle Island, South Boston, while improvements 
are continuing on MDC's Boston Harbor islands. Funding 
problems have delayed first phase construction of a Metropoli- 
tan Arena and Recreation Center, incorporating an indoor 
schoolboy track and a park on the Neponset River shoreline in 
Dorchester, and a new innovative, year-round Franklin Park 
Zoo. MDC's historic and park facilities were heavily involved in 
Bicentennial events, particularly a July 4th patriotic concert 
and fireworks display at Hatch Shell attended by 400,000 
Recreation activity has been broadened by newly-developed 
opportunities for canoeing, cross-country skiing, sailing and 

For the first time in 1 5 years MDC's primary water source 
at Quabbin Reservoir was filled on January 28, following sub- 
stantial above-average precipitation in the past four years But 
the need for new sources remained critical as rainfall dropped 
a half-inch below average in 1 976 and Quabbin diminished to 
98% of capacity by June 30. Meanwhile, the district's con- 
sumption in excess of safe watershed yield has increased and 
a number of additional communities are looking hopefully to 
MDC for water supply. The situation heightened the need for 
the long-delayed diversion of excess freshet flow of Connecti- 
cut River to feed Quabbin. Major extensions of the water sys- 
tem to the north and south of Boston, as authorized by legisla- 
tion, are in various stages of progress. This affects 1 2 
communities where needs are either pressing or anticipated in 
five to 1 5 years A pilot plant has been activated for feeding 
an approved zinc compound in an attempt to correct the lead 
problem in water caused by lead pipes in older local water 
systems Construction of a fluoridation facility is scheduled to 
start in a few months to alleviate tooth decay. 

A newly-completed inter-agency study of wastewater man- 
agement in the Boston Harbor-Eastern Massachusetts Metro- 
politan Area (EMMA) has launched the biggest pollution con- 
trol program in MDC history. Recommendations to meet long- 
range clean-waters requirements stretching into the next cen- 
tury are in the early stages of implementation The S855 mil- 
lion cost will be met by Federal, State and MDC funds Other 
pollution control projects underway or imminent include sludge 
disposal, harbor tidegate rehabilitation and sewer interceptor 
pipelines to enlarge the system's capacity. An ongoing con- 
struction program in Charles River's lower basin provides for a 
storm detention-chlorination facility, a pumping station and 
major conduits. Treated combined storm overflows will be 
discharged below the new Charles River dam. presently under 

A new dimension has been added to efforts by Metropoli- 
tan District Police in alleviating peak hour tieups on Central 
Artery and Southeast Expressway and consequent traffic over- 
flows into other roadways. Radio-equipped tow trucks oper- 
ated by MDC's Central Services Division have teamed up with 
police aerial spotting of breakdowns and accidents for rapid 
removal of disabled vehicles. In its first four months operation 
there were 1 587 responses by emergency units Crowd con- 
trol at heavily-attended Bicentennial celebrations posed a big 
challenge, as well as mobilization for emergency assistance to 
other agencies. There was heavy involvement, too. in Bos- 
ton's Phase 2 school desegration program early in the school 

A major crisis created by an unprecedented three-day 
strike of state employees was met with minimal impact on vital 
operations, although most recreation facilities were shut down 
With absenteeism ranging from 61% to 69% of the depart- 
ment's employees, many supervisory and other non-striking 
personnel worked around the clock or on extensive voluntary 
overtime duty to maintain essential operations MDC Police 
provided protection in maintaining these vital services 

MDC membership now consists of 43 cities and towns 
with 2.180,074 residents in the Sewerage District. 34 com- 
munities and 1 ,836,240 residents in the Water District and 37 
municipalities with 1 .984,940 population in the Parks District 
Twenty-four municipalities are members of all three districts. 
1 2 are served by two districts and 1 8 by one district 

Expenditures for fiscal 1 976 were $47.496. 1 47 for 
maintenance and operations, down $386,523 from 1975, 
and $26.81 2.727 for debt payment, up $2, 1 36.436 An 
additional $3,014,692 was expended for highway proiects 
funded by state highway bond issues and state-financed flood 
control work, which do not reflect in assessments on MDC 
cities and towns 

Fresh signs of the anticipated crunch on MDC's water sup- 
ply emerged during 1976, heightening the need for imple- 
menting plans for new sources, particularly the long-delayed 
diversion of excess freshet flow of Connecticut River to feed 
Quabbin Reservoir. 

The urgency was felt as an outgrowth of increased con- 
sumption in excess of the system's safe yield, below average 
rainfall in 1 976 and a growing need for water by communities 
outside the present water district. 

Ironically, the outlook took this turn after MDC's primary 
water source at Quabbin Reservoir overflowed on January 28 
for the first time in 1 5 years, bolstered by a total of 33.3 
inches above-average precipitation in the 1 972-75 period. By 
June 30 the reservoir had fallen to 98% of capacity or one 
foot below full elevation, foreshadowing a trend downward. In 
1976, rainfall dropped a half-inch below average, the first 
sub-normal year since 1 971 . Engineers have long felt that 
Quabbin 's level cannot be supported even by normal precipi- 
tation. An analysis has shown that a recurrence of the six-year 
drought of the '60s, which reduced Quabbin to 45% of 
capacity, would drop the level to 31 % based on current 

A reversal of the four-year downward trend of consump- 
tion has intensified the pressure for augmenting the system's 
average safe yield of 300 million gallons per day (mgd). The 
record high use of 321.6 mgd in 1971 gradually diminished 
to 312 mgd by 1974, due to reduced summertime demand 
during three wet years, but the figure has now risen to 31 6.6 
mgd. An all-time high for a single day's consumption was set 
on Aug. 1 , 1 975, when 434.9 mg were delivered through 
MDC pipes. 

Additional Communities Seek Water 

Jack Maley, MDC 

in 1 5 years on January 28, following four years of above- 
normal precipitation. Water level fell during 1976, due to 
slightly below average rainfall. A six-year drought in the 
'60s reduced Quabbin to 45% of capacity. 

Meanwhile, four Metropolitan Boston communities with 
supply problems — Bedford, North Reading, Lynnfield Center 
and Stoughton — have either applied for membership in the 
Water District as partial users or entered the discussion stage. 
Additionally, Woburn and Wellesley, admitted to the district in 
recent years as partial users, will be drawing water upon 
completion of connection facilities. In Western Massachusetts 
the hard-pressed towns of Amherst and Hadley and the Uni- 
versity of Massachusetts, all located in the Quabbin area, were 
offered up to five mgd of MDC water, simply as an alternative 
if no other sources can be found. Several other towns in this 
vicinity also are looking to MDC as a possible solution to their 

For the past decade, MDC planners have regarded the 
Connecticut River diversion as the most effective, environmen- 

tally-sound answer to the water problem facing 34 cities and 
towns in the Metropolitan Water District, 1 others to the west 
served under special agreements and other communities 
requiring water to supplement local sources in the future. 

Connecticut River Diversion 

Planning has been well advanced for facilities to flood- 
skim about 1 % of the river's excess flow during the spring 
flood season — otherwise wasted to the ocean — to aug- 
ment the Water District's principal source at Quabbin Reser- 
voir. State legislation limits the diversion to 375 mgd and only 
when the flow is 1 7,000 cubic feet per second at Montague, 
Mass. A Special Legislative Study Commission has reported 
that data shows "the projected total water needs of the Con- 

Jack Maiey. MDC 

QUABBIN RESERVOIR, as shown in a recent aerial photo, stretches 18 miles in length and provides most of the Water 
District's supply. An unspoiled wilderness setting has been retained in its surrounding wide-ranging forests, hills and islands. 

necticut River Valley, including water supply, recreation, navi- 
gation, fish and wildlife, cooling and water quality, can be 
amply met by a river flow of 1 0,000 cubic feet per second at 
Thompsonville, Conn." and that "a corresponding flow at 
Montague, Mass. would be considerably less than 10,000 
cubic feet per second." The surplus water would bolster 
MDC's annual supply by an average of 72 mgd or 26.3 billion 
gallons a year — nearly 25% of the current safe yield. 

The plan calls for a 1 0-mile aqueduct between Quabbin 
and the Northfield Mt. pumped storage reservoir built by 
Northeast Utilities for hydro-electric power production, with 
additional capacity for the proposed diversion Estimated time- 
table for completion of the aqueduct connection is seven 
years. The project has been delayed by negotiations with 
Northeast Utilities and still faces resistance from river valley 
groups and officials of the State of Connecticut, including a 
threat of litigation. 

Long-Range Studies Proceeding 

The full scope of state water resources and management 
is now under study by the Executive Office of Environmental 
Affairs. Its recommendations will provide a broad perspective, 
including supply, proposed inter-basin transfer of river water, 
conservation techniques, environmental, economic and recre- 
ational aspects and MDC's role in satisfying the state's needs 
A final report is scheduled for early 1977 

Other studies of various facets of the MDC system have 
been completed or still in progress, looking ahead at least 50 

years. The MDC program deals with new sources, upgrading 
and expanding the system and examination of water use. with 
emphasis on reducing waste by developing conservation 
methods and reducing leakage loss in municipal distribution 
systems. The latest study report on water transmission and 
distribution has produced a computer model and recommen- 
dations for a $30 million improvement program extending to 
1990. Preliminary findings in a draft report have encouraged 
proposed expansion of MDC's use of the Sudbury River 
watershed by flood-skimming and treating freshet flows, but 
final conclusions await further study of the controversial pro- 
posal. A number of conservation proposals have emanated 
from still another report. 

The necessity of upgrading old water mams in the MDC 
system was underlined when a century-old. 48-inch mam in 
Brookline burst on September 2. causing flooding damage to 
the MBTA s Riverside line, town recreation facilities. 49 apart- 
ment house tenants and owners, a business firm and a 

Maior water system extensions to the north and south of 
Boston are in various stages of progress, affecting 1 2 com- 
munities where needs are either pressing in some cases or 
anticipated within five to 1 5 years 

To the north a S1 4 million pipeline has been completed 
between Woburn. a new Water District member with water 
problems, and the westerly shore of Spot Pond Reservoir in 
Stoneham Still required to link Woburn with the MDC system 
are a one-mile. S1 2 million connection running benea' 

Quabbin Comes to Rescue 
In Ware River Flood Threat 

Quabbin Reservoir was pressed into service for 
flood control purposes for several days in early 1 976, 
when five towns along the Ware River were threat- 
ened with flooding. 

MDC diverted 580 million gallons per day via a 
12-mile tunnel linking the Ware River intake at Col- 
brook with the reservoir. Towns in the affected area 
were Ware, Barre, Hardwick, Gilbertville and Palmer. 
The Ware River watershed provides a limited water 
supply for Quabbin. The emergency was caused by 
melting snow, heavy rain of the January thaw and ice 

reservoir to the existing Spot Pond pumping station and a 
further pipeline extension of 9400 feet in Woburn. This project 
was designed with sufficient capacity for eventual extensions 
to Reading and North Reading, both potential members with 
supply problems. It would also provide capacity for an addi- 
tional pipeline to supplement flow and boost pressure for 
Stoneham and Wakefield, present members of the Water Dis- 
trict. A $5.3 million legislative authorization is being sought to 
complete these extensions as well as a proposed standpipe on 
Bear Hill in Middlesex Fells Reservation with a connection to 
the Woburn pipeline. Structural repairs of extensive fire dam- 
age at the Spot Pond pumping station in 1975 have been 
nearly completed under a $234,400 contract. New pumps 
and equipment rehabilitation are under design to provide pres- 
sure and volume for the Woburn pipeline. 

A construction start on facilities to serve seven communi- 
ties south of Boston has been delayed until at least 1 977 by a 
requirement of the Executive Office of Environmental Affairs 
for a complete environmental impact report, following an envi- 
ronmental assessment submitted in April. Opposition also has 
developed from some local groups against the proposed pipe- 
line route through Blue Hills Reservation. 

The $1 7 million program, authorized by 1 974 funding leg- 
islation, will provide service to six potential members, Avon, 
Braintree, Holbrook, Randolph, Stoughton and Weymouth, 
and provide an additional supply to Canton, presently a partial 
user member. Stoughton has already faced a water crisis in 
1 976, while studies indicated other communities will require a 
supplementary source within five to 1 5 years. A threatened 
moratorium on construction of multi-family housing was 
averted by MDC action in allowing Canton to share a portion 
of its MDC allotment of three mgd with Stoughton. The project 
calls for 1 5 miles of new water mains and a pumping station in 
the Randolph section of Blue Hills, with Blue Hills Reservoir 
serving as a major distribution facility. 

The way was cleared for the southern extension by activa- 
tion of the huge $19 million Dorchester Tunnel in 1975. The 
1 0-foot diameter tunnel with 300 mgd capacity runs 6 1 /3 miles 

Stable Water Rate Promising 
Under Pay-As-You-Go System 

For the second successive year, MDC has set a 
rate of $240 per million gallons in 1 976 for the 
34-member Water District, with a good prospect that 
the figure can be maintained in 1 977. 

As further assurance of a stabilized rate sought by 
MDC and district members, legislation will be filed to 
establish a Water Stabilization Reserve up to $3 mil- 
lion from surplus water income. The proposed reserve 
is aimed at offsetting future deficits and averting fluc- 
tuating rates. 

Legislation authorized a shift in 1974 from costly 
long-term financing of deficits to a pay-as-you-go 
policy, resulting in the first rate increase in 1 2 years. 
The $1 20 rate set by the Legislature in 1 962 rose to 
$200 in 1974 and to $240 in 1975 to equalize 
receipts with cost of debt and operation and to wipe 
out deficit borrowing. The deficit financing system 
has required $110 million in bond issues, $56.5 mil- 
lion of which is currently outstanding. This indebted- 
ness is now being constantly reduced under the pay- 
as-you-go policy. 

from Chestnut Hill at the Brighton-Brookline line to Dorchester 
Lower Mills. It was designed to boost pressure and supply for 
a large area of Boston and Brookline and for Quincy, Milton, 
Canton and Norwood. An inspection of a tunnel section in 
Dorchester to check on a possible leak is being planned, fol- 
lowing recent complaints of water seepage from some nearby 

A pilot plant facility went into operation in June to attempt 
to solve problems associated with outmoded lead service 
pipes used in older local water systems. An approved zinc 
compound is added to the water to offset the corrosive effect 
of MDC's soft water in lead pipes. Action was taken following 
sampling in Boston, Somerville and Cambridge households 
indicating lead content of drinking water in excess of Federal 
standards. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 
reported, however, that the problem was not with MDC water, 
described as "one of the finest serving an urban area any- 
where in the country." 

Construction of a $753,000 fluoridation plant is sched- 
uled to start in a few months, with completion due in the fall of 
1977. Anti-corrosion and fluoridation will be combined at the 
Southboro shaft linked with the tunnel system carrying water 
to the district from Quabbin and Wachusett reservoirs. Fluori- 
dation is expected to save upwards of $7 million annually for 
persons under the age of 20 by reducing tooth decay, accord- 
ing to an estimate by Massachusetts Dental Society. Its use on 
a district-wide basis will provide savings, too, for member 
communities which are planning or already have installed local 
fluoridation systems. 


A wide-ranging blue print for pollution control in Boston 
Harbor and tributaries and substantial progress on major proj- 
ects affecting the Charles River basin featured MDC's clean 
waters activity during 1 976. 

An intensive, inter-agency study in the Boston Harbor- 
Eastern Massachusetts Metropolitan Area (EMMA) has recom- 
mended an unprecedented, long-range program costing 
$855 million at 1975 prices, funded 75% by Federal grants, 
1 5% from state funds and 1 0% by members of MDC's Sewer- 
age District. 

The projects, designed to make Boston Harbor one of the 
cleanest metropolitan waters in the East, provide for alleviating 
combined stormwater-sewage overflows, particularly affecting 
Dorchester Bay and Charles River ($270 million); expanding 
primary treatment at Deer Island and Nut Island treatment 
plants ($92.5 million); upgrading the two plants from primary 
to secondary treatment as required by Federal law ($236.7 
million); sludge disposal facilities for primary treatment ($26 
million); additional facilities for secondary sludge management 
($28 million) and interceptors and pumping stations ($111 

Inland Treatment Plants Proposed 

A significant new approach was a recommendation for two 
inland treatment plants costing $90.7 million, which would 
discharge highly-treated effluent into the middle reaches of the 
Charles River and the upper Neponset River. These "satellite" 
plants would relieve the hard-pressed Nut Island treatment 
facility and also provide reclaimed clean water to augment 
badly-needed river flow during dry weather periods. 

Concern over the site selection and environmental impact 
of the Charles River plant has come from residents in the 
Needham-Wellesley-Natick-Dover area. Quincy citizens have 
expressed fear of an adverse impact on nearby waters from 
expanding the Nut Island plant for secondary treatment, 
requiring filling of 26 acres of Quincy Bay. However, a pro- 
posed change in Federal law to modify the requirement for 
secondary treatment for effluent discharged in ocean waters is 
pending in Congress. As an alternative, outfalls serving Deer 
Island and Nut Island would be extended further into deep 

Other phases of the EMMA report, completed in March, 
1976, recommended MDC as the appropriate management 
agency for building, operating and maintaining the proposed 
wastewater facilities and expansion of the Metropolitan Sewer- 
age District from 43 communities to 5 1 . 

Approval of the EMMA construction schedule by the US 
Environmental Protection Agency and MDC and finalized 
agreements with EPA are expected shortly Legislation has 
been filed to finance the planning and design phase of the 

Vital Services Maintained 
In Strike Crisis Struggle 

The spectre of raw sewage pouring into water- 
ways or backed up into residential areas, disruption 
of water supply and a health menace faced worried 
MDC officials in a major crisis posed by an unprece- 
dented strike of state employees on June 21-23. 

But the illegal walkout had minimal impact on 
essential public services — thanks to emergency 
planning and sleepless nights by dedicated supervi- 
sors and other non-striking personnel. Hundreds 
worked round-the-clock or voluntarily struggled 
through long overtime hours to prevent a breakdown 
of vital water distribution and sewerage operations. 
Some never left their post of duty during the three-day 

Absenteeism by the department s employees 
ranged from 61 % to 69% during the strike, following a 
breakdown in union contract negotiations. 

Sewage was by-passed into Quincy Bay at the Nut 
Island treatment plant with only chlorine disinfection 
for a single eight-hour shift, into Nashua River at a 
treatment plant in Clinton for 1 2 hours and backed up 
briefly into Charles River due to a shutdown of a 
Roxbury headworks installation. But cooperative 
efforts by MDC management and union officials 
restored service in recognition of the health hazard. 
Beaches and swimming pools were officially closed 
for lack of lifeguards and maintenance workers, along 
with zoos, golf courses and most other recreation 

MDC Police stationed at 71 individual facilities 
and at picket lines succeeded in averting major inci- 
dents, vandalism or damage to property. 

program Still ahead also are environmental assessment or 
impact statements required for each of the proposed projects 
and infiltration/inflow studies concerning reduction of ground- 
water seepage into sewer lines and inflow from illegal sewer 

In the Charles River Basin, an ongoing improvement pro- 
gram made big gains toward clean water goals aimed at 
enhancing enioyment of passive recreation, boating and 

A maior pollution source — overflows of combined storm- 
water and sewage — is being combatted by building large- 
capacity interceptor sewer lines and treatment facilities 

New Sewer Use Charge 
Faces District Members 

Facing the 43 communities in the Sewerage Dis- 
trict is a new system of local sewer use charges and 
revised MDC assessments required by recent state 
legislation. The measure was enacted to establish 
eligibility for Federal and State grants to MDC for 
sewage treatment works and also for local treatment 
projects. The Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 
1 972 stipulates that recipients of grants adopt a user 
charge, an industrial capital cost recovery program 
and a sewer ordinance regulating the type of sewage 
entering local systems. Implementation of these pro- 
visions will qualify MDC for grants estimated at $765 
million, largely for the proposed $855 million waste- 
water program recommended by the EMMA study. 

For households the user charge is expected to be 
related to water consumption, a method generally in 
effect by communities presently imposing this type of 
charge. Industries would be subject to a formula 
considering strength, volume and other characteris- 
tics of waste. Sewer use costs will be billed separately 
and no longer reflected in the property tax rate. 

MDC's assessment for member communities 
covering operation and maintenance costs will be 
based on residential population served by the system 
and a "population equivalent" formula for contribut- 
ing industries, commercial establishments and other 
users. This expense is now assessed on the basis of 
total population. MDC debt requirements will be 
assessed on total population and the population 
equivalents formula instead of capacity of municipal 
sewers connected to the MDC sewerage system. The 
new law applying to debt assessments is effective in 
1976 and for operations and maintenance in 1977. 
Sewer use charges and industrial cost recovery will 
become effective when treatment projects eligible for 
grants are completed. 

Charles River Basin Improvements Underway 

Construction began in 1976 on the $22 million Charles 
River Marginal Conduit Project designed to alleviate pollution 
in the lower basin. The facilities will also eliminate pollutant 
overflows in the one-half mile expansion of the basin created 
by the new $35 million Charles River Dam currently under 
construction near the Boston & Maine Railroad's North 

By early 1977, work is scheduled to start on a storm 
detention and chlorination plant and pumping station on the 
East Cambridge shoreline at a cost of $12.3 million. The first 
$3.6 million phase was underway in the fall of 1975, calling 
for an eight-foot-diameter force main to discharge treated 

effluent from the projected storm detention-chlorination station 
into the harbor below the new dam, regardless of tide level. 
Another 1 8-inch force main will carry screenings and sanitary 
sewage from the station to the Charlestown interceptor for 
treatment at Deer Island. A newly-awarded $4.8 million con- 
tract provides for large interceptor sewers for diverting over- 
flows from Boston, Cambridge and Somerville marginal con- 
duits to the detention-treatment station. Federal funds will 
cover 75% of the cost, the state 1 5% and the Sewerage Dis- 
trict 10%. 

Completion of the new Charles River Dam by early 1 978 
will greatly reduce another serious pollution source — salt 
water intrusion into the basin flowing through the boat lock at 
the existing dam built in 1908, particularly during heavy 
summer marine traffic. Because it is heavier than fresh water, 
the saline layer, devoid of oxygen and highly polluted, remains 
in stratified form on the basin bottom. This prevents vertical 
mixing and aeration, stifles fish and plant life and produces 
hydrogen sulfide gas odors at times. A preliminary study 
report proposed a destratification technique, utilizing com- 
pressed air discharged through air diffusers in strategic deep 
portions of the basin. The $600,000 system would insure the 
presence of oxygen throughout the water column, eliminate 
the threat of odors and fishkills from any future influx of salt 
water and provide a better environment for fish. 

Upriver, a final contract amounting to $3,655,000 has 
been awarded to complete a key North Charles interceptor in 
Cambridge at a total cost of $16.8 million. The four-phased 
program containing pipes as big as 8M> feet in diameter 
stretches three miles from Main Street to the vicinity of Mt. 
Auburn Hospital. The new interceptor supplements 20 miles of 
relief sewers built on the South Charles in recent years. 

The interceptors on both shorelines were designed to 
enlarge existing capacity carrying wastewater to Deer Island 
for treatment and tie in with the five-year-old Cottage Farm 
Stormwater Treatment Station in Cambridge, near B.U. 
Bridge. This innovative facility is similar to the storm detention- 
chlorination station to be built in the lower basin as part of the 
Charles River Marginal Conduit Project. 

During storms, the Cottage Farm prototype plant inter- 
cepts and treats overflows of combined sewage and storm- 
water from 26 discharge points on both banks of the basin. 
The process provides for screening, settling and chlorination 
before discharging effluent from holding tanks into the river 
and the disposal of pollutant solids into sewer lines for treat- 
ment at Deer Island. In 1 976 the plant was activated 73 times 
during storms, 21 of which were entirely contained by the 
facility with no discharge to the river. A total of 991 million 
gallons was diverted to the station for processing. 

The cleanup of Charles River waters will significantly sup- 
plement current activity on upgrading the quality of Boston 
Harbor waters. 

An important harbor program — rehabilitation of more 
than 1 00 defective tidegates to alleviate pollution and prevent 
salt water intrusion into the sewerage system — is scheduled 
for completion next year at a cost of $1.1 million. The faulty 

Jack Maley. MDC 

FLOOD CONTROL pumping station is near completion 
at Amelia Earhart Dam, below confluence of Mystic and 
Maiden rivers. The installation (at right) has a capacity of 
nearly two million gallons per minute. Three locks and con- 
trol tower (left) serve as gateway between Boston Harbor 
and the rivers, accommodating nearly 14,000 boat pas- 
sages annually. 

Jack Maley. MDC 

NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM is under construction, 
aimed at completion by early 1978. The 1200-foot facility 
will contain a flood control pumping station, three naviga- 
tion locks, a police patrol boat building, fishway for up-river 
access and a walkway viewing area. It will also enlarge the 
river basin by 30 acres and minimize intrusion of pollutant 
salt water. 

tidegates in the Boston main drainage system and Chelsea 
have allowed sea water to flow into sewers, causing flushing of 
sewage into the harbor on tide cycles and intrusion of corro- 
sive salt water into sewer lines leading to Deer Island treatment 
plant. The salt water reduction has already improved plant 
operation and maintenance as well as production of methane 
gas for energy use. 

In another facet of the harbor problem, an MDC plan to 
incinerate sludge from the primary treatment process at Deer 
Island and Nut Island plants has been supported by an impact 
study of the Environmental Protection Agency. The draft 
report concurred that incineration would be the most environ- 
mentally acceptable disposal method, but concluded that the 
ash should be hauled to an off-site sanitary landfill for disposal 
instead of in a man-made lagoon adjacent to Deer Island 

At Deer Island, a two-year experiment has begun to test a 
unique high energy electron irradiation method of disinfecting 
sludge and wastewater. The two-year pilot program is jointly 
financed by MDC, National Science Foundation and State 
Division of Water Pollution Control, and is being operated by 
MIT and High Voltage Engineering Corp. 

Design work and inflow/infiltration analyses are proceed- 
ing on three sewerage projects totaling $1 1 .8 million These 
are (1 ) expansion of the Reading pumping station and increas- 
ing the capacity of sewer lines serving Reading. Stoneham 
and Wakefield by 1 4 million gallons per day (mgd) at a cost of 
$3 million; (2) a relief sewer accommodating 2.5 mgd addi- 
tional flow to relieve an overloaded line serving sections of 
Brookline, Newton and West Roxbury, $5.4 million; (3) 
increasing the capacity of the sewer line siphon under Wey- 
mouth-Fore River for projected peak flows up to 63 mgd from 
Braintree, Randolph and Weymouth. 

In a continuous program of weed control, five fresh water 
areas were chemically treated in 1976 to provide maximum 
recreational benefits for swimming, boating or fishing. The 
locations were at St. Moritz Pond and Ponkapoag Pond in 
Blue Hills Reservation, Pearce Lake at Breakheart Reservation 
and the Upper and Lower Mystic lakes 

An industrial waste survey initiated in 1 974 on a pilot basis 
to determine adherence to MDC and Federal requirements has 
been expanded to all 43 communities in the Sewerage Dis- 
trict. Inspections have been completed in 1 1 communities 
involving 1045 industries Eighty-five were found to be in vio- 
lation of MDC rules and regulations and are presently pretreat- 
ing, implementing pretreatment and/or modifying their sys- 
tems to comply with standards 

Emergency efforts by Sewerage Division personnel suc- 
ceeded in restoring sewage treatment at the Nut Island plant 
after an 1 1 -hour disruption in January due to failure of power 
generators Backups in the system were averted by bypassing 
raw sewage into Quincy Bay until emergency generating units 
were installed The plant's equipment had been under a 
severe burden caused by heavy flows of stormwater into the 
sewerage system. During the past year nearly S1 million has 
been spent or committed to upgrade operating efficiency of 
the 25-year-old plant 

Flood Control Projects 

Flood control work in progress, in addition to the new 
Charles River Dam. was highlighted by a $5 9 million pumping 
station at the Amelia Earhart Dam. |ust below the confluence 
of the Mystic and Maiden rivers The installation, scheduled for 
completion in the fall of 1976, is designed to enlarge the 

Unique Twists, Large Turnout 
In Volunteer Spring Cleanup 

There were some new twists and scores of invol- 
untary workers among the thousands of volunteers 
involved in the 1976 spring cleanup of MDC parks 
and reservations. 

On a 35-mile stretch of the Charles River tackled 
by 1000 volunteers, a National Guard helicopter was 
utilized for the first time, swooping low to direct work- 
ers by radio to especially littered areas. New to the 
cleanup operation, too, were an armada of seven 
MDC police boats, two amphibious "ducks" for 
scouring the river surface and scuba divers to clear 
submerged debris. On shore, MDC, National Guard 
and municipal vehicles hauled away nearly 150 tons 
of trash. Two police buses transported volunteers to 
work areas. 

A surprise discovery turned up in the massive 
cleanup at Middlesex Fells Reservation — a cache of 
weapons, including a shotgun, three handguns, 
ammunition and two knives. About 1000 volunteers 
gathered 110 tons of debris, ranging from endless 
beer cans to a rowboat with a hole and refrigerators. 
Among the participating community groups were 
Friends of Middlesex Fells, a college fraternity from 
MIT and social studies students from Medford 
High School who received academic credit for 

More than 1 00 teenagers and young adults 
became involuntary workers, cleaning up beer cans 
and other trash at Nahant Beach as a penalty 
imposed in Lynn District Court for violating an MDC 
regulation against drinking alcoholic beverages on 

At Revere Beach, a disconcerting contrast in atti- 
tudes marked a cleanup by Revere High School stu- 
dents. While 600 bags of trash awaited pickup on the 
following day, vandals tore apart many of the bags, 
leaving behind a trail of scattered rubbish. 

A full-scale operation at Blue Hills Reservation 
drew 1 200 volunteers and produced 60 truckloads of 

dam's capacity to cope with major storms, particularly for 
pumping during high tides. A fish ladder has been incorpo- 
rated to facilitate passage of anadromous fish to the river 
upstream from the dam. 

A $438,000 floodwater pumping station has been com- 
pleted on Broad Sound Avenue, Revere, the scene of heavy 
damage in recent years from a combination of storms and 
high tides. 

In Quincy, an $827,000 project for dredging Black's 

SKY VIEW from a National Guard helicopter enabled 
MDC Commissioner John F. Snedeker to direct annual 
spring cleanup of Charles River area by volunteers. 

Creek off Quincy Shore Drive and flood control culvert work 
affecting Furnace Brook Parkway and Southern Artery areas is 
nearing completion. Benefits will include improved boating 
and other recreation. 

A $500,000 improvement program is scheduled for early 
1 977 on historic Mother Brook, the first canal dug in America 
by English settlers in 1 640 to provide industrial power by 
water diversion into Mill Creek from the Charles River. The 
improvements in Boston and Dedham along a 1 '/2-mile stretch 
of the 3 '/2-mile waterway, which empties into Neponset River, 
are designed to protect built-up areas from flood damage and 
develop passive recreation, such as walkways, fishing and 
boating. The work consists of restoration of two ponds, dredg- 
ing a portion of the brook, repairs to three dams and a general 
cleanup. In preparation for the project, nearly 21 acres of 
shoreline property have been acquired since 1969. 

Disastrous flooding was averted in early February when a 
mammoth ice jam piled up at the Moody Street Dam in Wal- 
tham following a two-day quick thaw coupled with rain and 
then by severe cold. Quick action by MDC crews, cranes and 
Metropolitan Police amphibious craft broke up the jam and 
relieved upstream flooding. The sudden release of backed-up 
water then sent a heavy flow and huge ice chunks down- 
stream, damaging some shorefront property. Observers con- 
cluded that the emergency measures prevented catastrophic 


The start of construction on a new 200-acre park reserva- 
tion on the Mystic River Basin and progress toward other 
major extensions of the parks system were highlights of recre- 
ational development during the past year. 

Steps were taken toward a one-mile oceanfront park and 
rejuvenation of Revere Beach in conjunction with a private 
redevelopment. A Belle Isle Reservation in East Boston was 
initiated and planning began for an urban park on the grounds 
of Chestnut Hill Reservoir in Brighton, designed to protect the 
water supply. 

Although preparations have been completed, funding 
problems have delayed first phase construction of a Metropoli- 
tan Arena and Recreation Center, incorporating an indoor 
schoolboy track and a park on the Neponset River shoreline in 
Dorchester, and a new innovative, year-round Franklin Park 

Meanwhile, work progressed on extensive renovation and 
development of Stony Brook Reservation in West Roxbury and 
Hyde Park and along Quincy Shore Drive at Wollaston Beach 
Reservation. Enhancing the popular appeal of the Charles 
River were projects for expanding recreation and relaxation, 
while improvements continued on MDC's Boston Harbor 
islands and work began on restoring historic Fort Indepen- 
dence at Castle Island, South Boston. 

Mystic River Park Underway 

Construction began in March on the $3.2 million first 
phase of a new scenic park reservation on the Mystic River 
Basin shoreline in Medford and Somerville, near Route 93 
expressway, the Fellsway and Mystic Valley Parkway. 

Described as MDC's most exciting open space project in 
many years, Mystic River Park will transform an estuary waste- 
land into a 200-acre panorama of park, marine and recreation 
facilities. The site borders a 525-acre fresh water basin con- 
verted from unsightly, odorous salt water tidal flats by the new 
Amelia Earhart Dam in 1 966. 

The initial phase extends along the Medford shoreline from 
the MBTA bridge near Earhart Dam to the Fellsway and then 
along Mystic Valley Parkway to the Hormel Stadium sports 
complex. Under development also will be an additional seg- 
ment on the up-river side of the Hormel athletic complex and a 
stretch of Somerville riverfront between the MBTA bridge and 
the Fellsway. 

The 1 00-acre first phase features parkland for passive 
recreation, an island wildlife sanctuary, a wetland wildlife 
conservation area and planting of 10,000 native trees and 
shrubs. Facilities will include a fishing pier, bicycle and foot 
paths, picnic tables, a lookout tower and parking The up-river 
segment, adjacent to the Hormel complex, will contain four 
tennis courts and Little League and soccer fields An MDC 

Summer Program Performs 
Mammoth Housekeeping Job 

It was a mammoth housekeeping job rarely seen 
on MDC property, thanks to 1 1 00 teen-agers and 
young adults in a special 1976 program to create 
summer employment and three Youth Conservation 
Corps projects in wooded reservations. 

Tackling a backlog of chores neglected for lack of 
personnel, the youthful work force applied 1 700 gal- 
lons of paint over 1 25 miles of guard rails, fences and 
curbing, 200 cross-walks and hundreds of park 
benches. Grass was kept neatly trimmed, acres of 
overgrown brush cleared and 680 tons of debris 
removed. Watersheds and other water supply prop- 
erty were cleared of litter, brush and debris. Clerical 
and service tasks were absorbed. Approximately $1 
million was spent in supplementing the efforts of 300 
seasonal maintenance workers. MDC officials were 
enthusiastic about the results. 

Much-needed forestry work was undertaken at 
Breakheart, Middlesex Fells and Blue Hills reserva- 
tions by 105 young men in a Youth Conservation 
Corps program. The projects were financed by 
Federal funds and aided by MDC supervision and 

sailing pavilion and dock were completed in 1974 on the 
Somerville shore, near Route 93, along with an adjacent park 
The next stage provides for development of parkland on 
the west shore of the Maiden River from its confluence with the 
Mystic, a boat launch and extension of the phase one bicycle 
and foot paths Plans also call for a park and fishing pier on a 
small peninsula alongside Route 93 in Somerville 

Revere Oceanfront Park Funded 

Creation of a one-mile beachfront park and reiuvenation of 
Revere Beach have gained new impetus by legislation author- 
izing a $5 million expenditure and acquisition of the blighted 
amusement area on the oceanfront 

The beachfront park is an outgrowth of a maior joint rede- 
velopment plan in the Revere Beach area proposing a $ 1 00 
million private housing development set back from the beach, 
westerly of Ocean Avenue, a 2000-car garage at the Wonder- 
land MBTA station and a new connector highway from Cutler 
Circle, near Northeast Expressway. Revere 


The 1 OO-foot-wide park site lies between Ocean Avenue 
and Revere Beach Boulevard and runs one mile from Shirley 
Avenue to Revere Street, incorporating the deteriorating 
amusement strip. 

A provision of the newly-enacted legislation allows an 
exchange of an MDC parking area on the inland side, westerly 
of Ocean Avenue, for beachfront property acquired by the 
housing developer. MDC has agreed to the transaction "in 
principle" but terms are pending. The exchange enables MDC 
to build a landscaped park and pedestrian mall behind the 
beach seawall and provides a setback of apartment towers far 
enough to avoid casting shadows on the beach. Acquisition of 
additional property is also authorized. 

Another provision creates an inter-agency Revere Beach 
Design Review Board, including City of Revere representation, 
to determine whether proposed site development plans are 
suited to Revere Beach characteristics. MDC planners have 
been working closely with the developer and other state agen- 
cies to safeguard and enhance public enjoyment of the heavi- 
ly-used MDC recreation asset acquired in 1895 as the first 
publicly-owned beach in the country. 

About 1 Vz miles south of Revere Beach, preliminary plans 
have been developed for a proposed 200-acre Belle Isle 
Reservation near Constitution Beach, East Boston, following 
acquisition of the 28-acre, former Suffolk Downs drive-in thea- 
ter. This site's concept calls for a passive park containing 
open space tor informal play, tree planting, park benches and 
picnic locations. Opening an existing closed channel to Belle 
Isle Creek and cutting a second channel will allow tidal flush- 
ing and create an island with connecting bridges. Transfer of 
135 acres of the Belle Isle saltmarsh by Massport has been 
requested for expanding the reservation. 

At Constitution Beach, a $737,000 program for rehabilita- 
tion and improvements has been nearly one-half completed, 
with the final phase scheduled for 1 977. The first two phases 
provided basketball and handball courts, floodlighting, 
benches, a children's play area, replacement of paving with 
green park space and miscellaneous work. The final stage 
calls for an addition to the skating rink, including team dress- 
ing rooms, showers, multi-use rooms and spectator seating, 
and two tennis courts and landscaping. 

Urban Park at Chestnut Hill 

An urban park plan at MDC's Chestnut Hill Reservoir has 
emerged from last year's controversy over pollution effects of 
encroachment by joggers, picnickers, swimmers and dogs, 
which resulted in barring the public from the distribution reser- 
voir grounds in Brighton. 

A $2.9 million master plan has been prepared for a new 
Chestnut Hill Reservation complete with a 1.6-mile jogging 
path, as well as exterior work at the Chestnut Hill water supply 
pumping stations and reconstruction of two roadways within 
1 7'/2 -acres transferred from the City of Boston. A relocated 
fence around the reservoir will protect the water supply from 
people using the park. The project also provides for wooden 

DEVELOPMENT of Boston Harbor Islands Park is pro- 
gressing. Among latest improvements at MDC's Lovell's 
Island are interpretive nature trail, tree planting, fireplaces 
and camp sites. 

benches, drinking fountains, a new playground near MDC's 
Cleveland Circle skating rink, lighting, bike paths, landscaping 
and upgrading the roadway drainage system to prevent runoff 
from entering the reservoir. The multi-purpose project will be 
financed by parks, water and highway funds. 

Schoolboy Track Delayed 

A financing complication has delayed construction of an 
indoor schoolboy track serving the Parks District, designed as 
the centerpiece of a $7 million park and recreation center on 
the Neponset River shoreline in Dorchester, near Southeast 

The obstacle developed when the lowest bid of $6.5 mil- 
lion for the track and other facilities planned as the first phase 
indicated that the entire complex, as mandated by legislation, 
would cost $1 .4 million more than the authorized $6.9 million. 
The Commission then decided to seek legislation for repeal of 
a provision for an ice hockey forum, bringing costs into line 
with available funds and allowing the project to proceed. 

First phase of the 45-acre, diversified recreation complex 
would consist of a multi-use indoor track structure, a service 
building, six lighted outdoor basketball courts, landscaping, 
roadways, lighting and parking. 

The sprawling 74,250 square foot track structure will 
accommodate a complete range of competitive track events, 


AN AUDfTOR/UM-CLASSROOM is under construction 
at Trailside Museum, as shown at left in artist's drawing. 
The barn-like structure was designed to blend with the 
museum 's original colonial farmhouse to the right. 

basketball, tennis, volley ball, badminton and handball. The 
service building will house lockers, concessions and rooms for 
exercise equipment and community gatherings. 

Rounding out the complex, the second construction phase 
provides for lighted tennis courts, softball, soccer, bicycle 
paths, picnic areas, fishing piers, pleasure boat-launching 
ramp and various riverside improvements. 

Stony Brook Reservation Projects 

A major $2 5 million renovation and development program 
is well advanced at the 470-acre Stony Brook Reservation in 
the heavily-populated West Roxbury-Hyde Park section of 
Boston. The improvements provide a wide variety of athletic, 
park and active and passive recreation facilities, and specially- 
designed areas for the handicapped and for the elderly. 

The $310,717 first phase has been newly completed in 
the Turtle Pond area, including two fishing piers, picnic 
grounds, improvement and expansion of the hiking and bicy- 
cle path system, two parking areas, planting of 480 trees and 
changes at the Turtle Pond-Enneking Parkway intersection. 

Work has just begun on two contracts totaling 
$ 1 , 1 7 1 ,527 for rehabilitation and new facilities at the ad|oin- 
ing Kelly and Gelewitz fields and at the Factory Hill play- 
ground. The Kelly fieldhouse is slated for enlargement and 
major repairs and the softball and baseball fields will be rebuilt 
and equipped with new bleachers and an irrigation system An 
overlook park has been designed for the elderly as a viewing 

Jack Maley. MDC 

NEWEST SKATING RINK at projected waterfront park 
in Boston's North End offers harbor views from large win- 
dow walls. The rink has been used occasionally for morning 
practice sessions by Boston Bruins who described it "as 
good as we have seen. " 

area, equipped with benches and game tables A gazebo sur- 
rounded by a moat is being installed overlooking the play 
areas. Walkways, play equipment, benches and lighting will 
dress up Factory Hill playground and the entire area is being 
enhanced by planting of 730 trees A new River Street athletic 
field and bleachers are also specified 

A newly-awarded $307,664 contract provides for improv- 
ing the trail system in Stony Brook's southern section, three 
lighted tennis courts at Smith's Field and picnic facilities at 
Rooney's Rock and Turtle Pond. 

Work is scheduled to start in 1 977 on a park maintenance 
structure estimated at $350,000 and subsequently the John 
F. Thompson Center for the Handicapped The latter will con- 
sist of a central building, nature trails with descriptive environ- 
mental exhibits in Braille, play and picnic areas and an out- 
door classroom at an estimated cost of $375,000 

A grant of approximately $1 million by the US Depart- 
ment of Interior's Bureau of Outdoor Recreation has been 
assured for Stony Brook development 

At the nearby five-acre park embracing Francis D Martini 
Music Shell on Truman Highway. Hyde Park, a $167,910 
project has been completed, emphasizing restoration of the 
natural environment The work provided for floodlighting, a 
natural grass amphitheater, extensive tree and shrub planting, 
relocation of two lighted tennis courts, a lighted basketball 
court, a new picnic area and lighting standards An $83,925 
reimbursement has been granted by the Bureau of Outdoor 

In another Hyde Park development, a 1 \:-acre wooded 


tract on Dale Street has been converted to recreational pur- 
poses at a cost of $ 1 39,893, equipped with two tennis courts, 
basketball standards, children's play area, pathways and 

Charles River Basin Development 

A continuous program of beautification, development and 
acquisition along the scenic Charles River Basin is expanding 
opportunities for recreation and relaxation. 

Construction of the third phase of a projected bikeway 
system on both shores of the Charles from Watertown to Bos- 
ton was begun at a cost of $298,832. The project extends the 
Esplanade bikeway one mile along Soldiers Field Road, Bos- 
ton, between B.U. and River Street bridges, equipped with 
overlooks, benches and landscaping. An interesting aspect is 
a wooden bridge swung out over the river on pilings beneath 
B.U. Bridge as a link to existing paths on the Esplanade. Miss- 
ing links and improvements on the north side of the Charles 
were completed last year from Watertown to Boston. The 
1 6-mile network presently available — widely used by joggers 
as well as recreation-minded and commuting bicyclists — will 
be expanded to a 25-mile network on both sides of the river. 
Two additional projects on the Boston side will improve the 
existing route from Science Museum through the Esplanade to 
B.U. Bridge and provide the final link from River Street Bridge 
to Watertown Square. 

On the Cambridge shoreline, a major restoration and 
upgrading of the Magazine Beach recreation area has been 
completed. The $254,1 12 contract stressed extensive land- 
scaping, shade trees, a grass and tree-covered overlook of 
the river, earth forms simulating fortifications used in the Revo- 
lutionary War and removal of a bisecting roadway. Other fea- 
tures were installation of drinking fountains, picnic tables and 
play equipment, and reconstruction of two existing ball fields. 

Off Soldiers Field Road, Brighton, work has been com- 
pleted on the initial stage of structural renovations and 
improvements at Herter Park Center, formerly Metropolitan 
Boston Arts Center (MeBAC). Planning is proceeding on rede- 
sign of the structure's interior and renovation of the summer 
outdoor theater where the Publick Theater has been perform- 
ing for six years. The Center, named in honor of the late Mas- 
sachusetts Governor and U.S. Secretary of State, has been 
designated for environmental, cultural, recreational and edu- 
cational uses. Among activities in the 1976 season were 
urban gardening demonstrations, ethnic cultural events, a 
music and theater performing arts series and various exhibits. 

Preparations have begun to create a new riverfront park 
adjacent to Moody Street Dam in Waltham, where property on 
a 1 6-acre site has been acquired by eminent domain, along 
with 2.2 acres of the riverbed. A development plan for passive 
recreation provides for tree planting, landscaping, a lighting 
system, walkways, benches and a fish ladder affording a view 
of fish migration from the park. The acquisition is in line with 
MDC policy to acquire available shorefront land for conversion 
to green park space, a program strongly supported by the late 

Jack Maley, MDC 

SCENIC BIKEWAY along Charles River Basin is popular 
with joggers as well as recreation-minded and commuting 
bicyclists. A 1 6-mile network along both shorelines pres- 
ently completed is being expanded to 25 miles running 
between Boston and Watertown. 

Representative Richard 
park will be named. 

E. Landry of Waltham, for whom the 

Improvements at Wollaston Reservation 

For the populous area south of Boston significant recrea- 
tion projects have been completed or in progress, highlighted 
by a $2.7 million, multi-purpose improvement program along 
Quincy Shore Drive at heavily-patronized Wollaston Beach 

Initial work at Wollaston, completed in 1974, was an 
$875,000 culvert-type structure replacing the Sergt. Green- 
berg Bridge at Black's Creek, incorporating tidegates to con- 
trol tidal action and maintain upstream water level. Finishing 
touches are in process on an $827,000 contract for dredging 
Black's Creek to improve tidal flow and deepen the tidal basin 
for boating and a culvert under Southern Artery to alleviate 
flooding. Nearing completion is a $968,000 project to recon- 
struct a 3000-foot section of Shore Drive in the same vicinity, 
including a median strip, sidewalk, bicycle path, pedestrian 
lights, rip-rap on the shoreline and recreation facilities at 
Caddy Park, known also as Treasure Island. Nearby historic 
Moswetuset Hummock has been given a $42,686 facelift, 
with tree-planting, landscaping, a rustic bridge and a new 
channel for free-flowing tides around the Hummock. Another 
improvement in the planning stage is a multi-service center on 
the newly-acquired site of the former Kimberly's Restaurant 
and an adjoining parcel. The proposed structure will contain 
public restrooms and a police sub-station. 

Development of a passive recreation concept has been 


completed at Stodders Neck in Hingham, a 22-acre peninsula 
on Weymouth Back River acquired in 1 972. A $243,000 con- 
tract has installed walking paths, picnic areas, parking, land- 
scaping, a boat landing and a promontory offering a spectacu- 
lar view of Hingham Bay, Quincy Bay and Boston Harbor. 

A neglected eyesore at Patten's Cove, off Morrissey Bou- 
levard, Dorchester, is being converted into an attractive, five- 
acre natural park under a $137,465 contract. The site in the 
Savin Hill section will be enhanced by tree and shrub planting, 
regrading, channel excavation and stabilizing the shoreline of 
the tidal basin. 

In the Blue Hills Reservation, a $263,000 contract has 
been awarded for a 1 65-seat auditorium-classroom at the 
popular Trailside Museum to accommodate natural history 
educational programs and an exhibit construction and storage 
area. The barn-like structure is an addition to the museum's 
original Dutch colonial farmhouse. Under design are improve- 
ments to parking lots and grounds, including a new garage, 
landscaping, animal furnishings and relocation of fences and 
cages in the animal exhibit area. 

Design work is also proceeding on upgrading the heavily- 
used Houghton's Pond area of Blue Hills Reservation by 
restoring much of its former natural beauty. Important features 
of the project consist of improvements to worn and eroded 
areas, relocation and redesign of access roads and parking 
spaces, overhaul and blending of equipment with the natural 
area, new play equipment and informal plantings. 

MDC's network of ice-skating rinks reached 26 with the 
completion of a $1 ,768,275 facility at a projected waterfront 
park in Boston's North End in time for the 1975-76 season. 
Incorporating a new architectural concept, the rink provides 
wide-open harbor and park views from its large window-walls 
and has seating capacity for 500 spectators 

A $1 .7 million program has provided for fully-enclosing 
three open-sided rinks and major improvements such as new 
refrigeration systems, lighting and other features. This work 
has already been completed at the Bryan rink in West Rox- 
bury, while a similar project at the Reilly Memorial rink at 
Cleveland Circle, Brighton, is scheduled for completion in the 
fall of 1976. A construction start will be underway shortly at 
Allied Veterans Memorial rink in Everett. The conversions will 
leave only nine open-sided facilities out of 26. 

Extensive repairs have been completed at tennis, basket- 
ball, handball and fences under a $1 23,040 project covering 
facilities in Boston, Somerville, Dedham and Nahant At 
Everett, two new tennis courts were installed. 

In the sixth year of an aesthetic and environmental pro- 
gram, 2107 trees were planted through the park system, 
bringing the total plantings to approximately 1 7,000 in parks 
and along roadways and waterways 

An uncertain future still faces Boston Arena, which 
became MDC property on July 1, 1975, when the Boston 
Arena Authority was dissolved. The planned purchase by the 
City of Boston for $450,000 has not yet been consummated, 
but the city has been given care and control for use as a 
municipal sports center pending final disposition. 

The spectacular 4th of July celebration at Hatch Shell on 
the Charles River Esplanade stole the nation's Bicentennial 
spotlight as the greatest holiday event in Boston's history and 
easily the highlight of MDC's 1 976 summer recreation 

In a spirit of patriotism and good will, 400.000 people 
jammed the Boston and Cambridge shorelines of the river, 
roadways and buildings for Boston Symphony's Esplanade 
Pops concert conducted by Arthur Fiedler and a massive fire- 
works display, while millions watched on a national television 
network and local TV stations. 

The massive attendance — double the anticipated turnout 
— was a big challenge in logistics, traffic congestion and 
crowd control for the 1 60-man MDC police detail and five 
police boats, but the event was remarkably free of incidents. 
An hand also were Boston officers handling traffic on nearby 
city streets, 1 00 volunteers equipped with walkie-talkie units, 
first aid stations and ambulances — all coordinated by an 
operations and communications center on an 11 -story build- 
ing rooftop overlooking Hatch Shell and the Esplanade 

Patriotic selections dominated the musical program, but 
the growing renown of Arthur Fiedler's unique presentation of 
Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture for the third season was the 
evening's climax The performance was punctuated by firing 
of 1 05 mm howitzers accompanied by amplified bell ringers 
and nearby church bells coordinated with fireworks The 
finale's mammoth aerial fireworks show fired from three 
barges thrilled spectators ashore and aboard hundreds of 
boats anchored in the river. Sponsor of the program was the 
non-profit Boston's Fourth of July. Inc in cooperation with 
MDC. Its aftermath — homegoers tangled in heavy traffic well 
after midnight and a two-day cleanup of 40 tons of rubbish, 
including 50,000 donated plastic bags distributed to specta- 
tors for their trash 

The next night brought another heavily-attended event in 
the series of Bicentennial celebrations utilizing MDC facilities 
A fireworks display at Carson Beach sponsored by the City of 
Boston drew a crowd of 60.000. again posing crowd control 
problems for police and leaving behind over 40 tons of trash 
along MDC beaches from Tenean Beach in Dorchester to 
South Boston's Castle Island. 

Then came the international Tall Ships parade in Boston 
Harbor on the following Saturday, when an estimated 
250.000 thronged MDC's Castle Island and adioming Mass- 
port facilities A 1 80-man police detail dealt with the large 
influx of visitors and traffic congestion on heavily-traveled 
roadways as spectators poured into vantage points along the 
harbor Police involvement was required also for the next 


WOLLASTON BEACH is among MDC's 1 7 ocean 
beaches which provide a big attraction for millions, while 
many turn to four fresh water beaches, 1 9 swimming pools 
and various wading pools scattered through the Parks 

clay's Sunday visit by Britain's Queen Elizabeth and her hus- 
band, Prince Philip. 

Meanwhile, MDC's year-round recreational opportunities 
continued to expand in scope, particularly such activity as 
sailing, harbor island facilities and outdoor attractions along 
the 8 '/2-mile Charles River Basin and its shoreline park 

Charles River Magnet for Recreation 

Millions of outdoor enthusiasts enjoyed passive and active 
recreation along the Charles, ranging from boating of every 
description to a series of parks, playgrounds, athletic fields, 
tennis, swimming and wading pools, a summer theater at 
Herter Park, skating rinks, a bikeway network and restful sun- 
ning and strolling. 

Among the myriad activities for recreation and relaxation 
on the Charles, the Hatch Shell was a prime magnet, drawing 
741,000 for 33 highly-varied performances. The repertoire 
ran the gamut from Boston's Symphony's 1 traditional 
Esplanade Pops concerts and four "Bach in the Basin" pre- 
sentations by the Esplanade Mozart Orchestra to nine nights 
of "Ballet on the Esplanade" by the Boston Ballet company. A 
unique event was a two-hour "Polynesian Fantasy" produc- 
tion with 300 dancers viewed by 20,000 followed by a fire- 
works display from a river barge, attracting an estimated 
60,000 on both riverbanks. The program was sponsored by 
Nichiren Shoshu Academy, a Buddhist laymen's organization 
devoted to achieving world peace, as "a special Bicentennial 
present to Boston." Large crowds were entertained also by 60 
band concerts at various beaches and reservations during the 
summer season. 

A popular sightseeing experience has been revived by a 
new excursion boat service in the Charles River Basin, follow- 
ing a lapse in recent years. The eight-mile round trip between 
Museum of Science and Lars Anderson Bridge aboard the 
62-passenger "water-bus" restores a longtime traditional 
method of viewing scenic and cultural landmarks in Boston 
and Cambridge. 

An innovative four-day experiment in rerouting Sunday 
traffic from a 1 1 /2-mile stretch of Memorial Drive was so suc- 
cessful in early spring that MDC extended the Sunday shut- 
down for the entire summer to provide more riverfront area for 
casual enjoyment by Cambridge residents. The trial period 
sought by People for Riverbend Park confirmed last year's 
one-day successful experience, inaugurated by a carnival 
atmosphere, complete with costumes, kite-flying, folk dancing 
and music. 

The largest happening on the river basin was the Head-of- 
the-Charles Regatta, described as the biggest rowing event in 
the world. In its 1 1 th year, the late-October competition over a 
three-mile course saw 683 racing shells powered by 2870 
oarsmen and women participate in 18 events. Over 50,000 
lined the shore and bridges to watch the regatta, sponsored 
by Cambridge Boat Club. 

Sailing, Canoeing Activity Growing 

Upriver, the resurgence of canoeing is growing steadily, 
particularly under the auspices of Lincoln Guide Service 
housed at the MDC Police Riverside sub-station in Auburn- 
dale. In four years, canoeists have increased from 4000 to 
1 6,500 and the rental livery has grown to 60 canoes. 
Attracted by the appeal of physical fitness, healthy recreation 
and ecological and historical interest in the river, participants 
have included school, organization and employee groups. 
Water safety instruction and canoeing techniques have been 
stressed for neophyte canoeists and one-day and overnight 
trips were available. In its second year's operation under MDC 
ownership, the newly-acquired Needham YMCA's Red Wing 
Bay canoe livery was utilized by 2 1 65 participants. The facility 
was incorporated into recreational summer programs spon- 


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BICENTENNIAL CELEBRATION at Hatch Shell on the Charles River Esplanade was packed at every vantage point on July 
4th by 400,000 people attending Pops concert conducted by Arthur Fiedler and a massive fireworks display. This Boston 
Globe photo by Ted Dully was taken more than three hours before festivities began. 

sored by the town of Needham, day camps and youth centers 
The site also served as a launch site for privately-owned 

One of the most picturesque sights in the lower basin is 
MDC's sailing program, established in 1936 and operated by 
Community Boating, Inc. With a fleet of 93 sailboats, four 
launches and four rowboats, membership in the self-sustain- 
ing operation was increased to 6972 senior and junior partici- 
pants. Enrollment of physical education classes totaled 470 
students from 22 public and private schools and colleges A 
wide range of activities was offered, such as sailing instruc- 
tion, races for juniors and seniors, a rowboat regatta. Junior 
Olympics, harbor trips and social events for youths and adults 

A surge of interest in sailing has been met by development 
of two new programs during 1 976 and three others in recent 
years. A community program was inaugurated on the Charles 
River basin in Cambridge this season as part of an agreement 

allowing Massachusetts Institute of Technology to enlarge its 
boating pavilion. In Dorchester Bay. near Columbia Point. 
Brighter Day. Inc., initiated sailing for inner-city youth, 
attended largely by minority groups 

The Pleasure Bay sailing facility at Castle Island. South 
Boston, serving the Parks District's southern area for its fifth 
season, enrolled 1 730 members and also furnished a number 
of unique services These included classes for the blind, hand- 
icapped, special children and the elderly The facility was 
used. too. for athletic programs of Boston schools, the Massa- 
chusetts High School Sailing Championship and the New Eng- 
land Prep Schools Championship 

In its third year's operation, sailing in the Mystic River 
Basin has enrolled nearly 3000 participants at MDC's new 
boathouse and pavilion on the Somerville shoreline, designed 
to accommodate the district's northern region A small-scale 
sailing activity at Constitution Beach. East Boston initiated a 


Jack Maley, MDC 

year ago, has grown to 125 participants equipped with six 
sailboats and a safety launch. Sponsor is the North Shore 
Recreational & Social Center, which operates an extensive 
summer program utilizing the skating rink located at the 

Heavy volume of other boating was recorded. At the 
Charles River Dam 15,247 boats passed through the locks, 
while 1 3,420 were logged at the Amelia Earhart Dam's locks 
on the Mystic River. 

Harbor Islands Popular 

In another marine environment, MDC's Georges, Lovell's 
and Peddocks islands have shared the continuing develop- 
ment of Boston Harbor Islands Park with the Department of 
Environmental Management (DEM), spearheaded by the Exec- 
utive Office of Environmental Affairs. 

Expansion of activities, services and access made signifi- 
cant progress, introducing many new visitors to the natural 
beauty, recreational resources and the tremendous potential 
of 30 harbor islands. 

A free seasonal "water taxi" service linked Georges with 
nearby Lovell's and DEM islands, while two boat lines eased 
access by reducing round-trip fares to encourage week-day 
attendance on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Free 
boat transportation was made available to 5300 low-income 
community groups. 

Public attention was focused on the urban aquatic park 
during Boston Harbor Islands Week in July. Among the special 
events were a yacht regatta honoring the arrival of the Tall 
Ships, tours of historical and natural sites, an authentic Civil 
War muster at Fort Warren, children's programs and the first 

CHARLES RIVER offers ideal canoeing for group excur- 
sions on the upper river and sailing for youngsters and 
adults in the basin against a backdrop of Beacon Hill and 
downtown Boston. 

annual Governor's Cup sailboat race. 

Enjoyment of Georges and Lovell's islands was considera- 
bly enhanced by improvements financed under a $500,000 
Federal grant. At Georges, a historical trail marked by interpre- 
tive signs was installed for Fort Warren and restoration work 
gave visitors more exposure to interior rooms and access to 
the upper ramparts for the first time. Other projects included 
tree planting, erosion control and protection against safety 
hazards. An interpretive nature trail, tree planting, fireplaces 
and camp sites were among the new installations at Lovell's. 
Specialized equipment acquired for management of the island 
park system included two police boats bought from the City of 
Boston and a rebuilt Navy landing craft used as a work boat to 
transport personnel and equipment. 

The appeal of harbor islands was reflected in attendance 
at Georges Island estimated by police at upwards of 200,000, 
lured by its scenic appeal, picnic areas and historic Fort War- 
ren. The fort is known particularly as a harbor defense in all 
American wars and a Civil War prison for Confederate civil and 
military personnel. Permits were issued to 490 groups, repre- 
senting nearly one-fourth of the visitors. Lovell's Island drew 
24,000 visitors, including 1 288 campers and 4000 who used 
the beach under lifeguard supervision. Peddocks Island, off 
the Hull shore, was visited by nearly 2000. The island, 
acquired in 1970, is available only on a permit basis, mostly 
for camping and picnics, pending development of public 

Fishing in MDC waters continues its popularity, especially 
at Quabbin Reservoir's three fishing areas where 64,321 were 
on hand in 1976 along shorelines and in boats. Available for 
rental were 53 outboard motors and 1 10 aluminum boats, 
while 13,065 private boats were launched by fishermen. 


WINTER SPORTS facilities are easily accessible in the 
Parks District, including a well-equipped ski area in Blue 
Hills Reservation, cross-country skiing at Blue Hills and 
Martin Golf Course in Weston and 26 skating rinks. 

Receipts reached a record high of $96,498, yielding a net 
profit of $2482. Elsewhere in the water supply system, 5264 
fishing permits were issued for use at designated shorelines of 
Wachusett and Sudbury reservoirs. Fishermen also flocked 
year-round to fishing piers at the Lynn Harbor mouth of Sau- 
gus River and Castle Island, South Boston. An incentive to 
discover salt water fishing opportunities was offered to anglers 
by a Boston Harbor fishing tournament jointly sponsored by 
the State Executive Office of Environmental Affairs and MDC 
Meanwhile, fresh-water sportsmen found improved fishing at a 
dozen ponds in park reservations, where stocking and weed 
control programs have upgraded fishing sites 

Golfing events focused considerable attention on MDC's 
1 8-hole Leo J Martin Golf Course in Weston and the two 
1 8-hole layouts at Ponkapoag in the Blue Hills Reservation at 
Canton. A unique golf museum was completed on the grounds 
of the Martin course, displaying mementos of the late Francis 
Ouimet of international fame. The privately-funded building 
houses the Ouimet Caddie Scholarship Fund, Massachusetts 
Golf Association and Women's Golf Association. The course 
was also the scene of regional qualifying competition in the 
National Long-Driving contest for the benefit of junior golf. 

At Ponkapoag, a five-day Junior Boys Golf School and 
Camp was held for the third year attended by 57 boys under 
sponsorship of New England Professional Golf Association 
Other major events were the 33rd annual New England Junior 

Golf Championship with 612 entries, the 37th CYO tourna- 
ment drawing 529 contestants, the fifth Massachusetts Public 
Links Championship with 92 competitors and regional qualify- 
ing rounds in the National PGA Junior Tournament which 
attracted 60 boys and 1 girls — opened to female contes- 
tants for the first time. At Ponkapoag 86.000 rounds were 
played and 44.000 at Martin 

Most popular summer-time attraction is bathing at MDC's 
1 7 miles of ocean beaches and four fresh-water beaches. 
attracting attendance estimated upwards of 15 million Eight- 
een outdoor pools and one year-round swimming facility were 
used by nearly 400.000 Special programs were furnished 
such as swimming instruction for children, adults, handi- 
capped youngsters and swim meets sponsored by high 
schools and local recreation departments 

For the winter season, principal activities are skating at 
MDC's network of 26 rinks, extensive downhill sknng facilities 
in the Blue Hills Reservation and cross-country skiing 

A substantial decline in the use of skating rinks since 
1972 and heavy operational expense in the face of budget 
limitations have led to a two-year moratorium until 1978 on 
building additional skating facilities The Commission also 
decided to use this period to evaluate usage trends and the 
possibility of future divestiture of rinks in the belief that they 
have become more local than regional in nature and might be 
appropriately operated by member communities Attendance 


MDC's New North End Rink 
Scores An Assist to Bruins 

MDC's newest skating rink in Boston's North End 
scored an important assist to the Boston Bruins' 
hockey season. 

The facility — hardly a stone's throw from the 
Boston Garden — was rented for morning practice 
sessions when the Garden was unavailable. Team 
spokesmen described the rink "as good as any they 
have seen.'' 

The Bruins also looked to the MDC for emergency 
help during their historic game with the Soviet Red 
Army hockey team. With one of the Garden's two ice- 
conditioning machines out of commission, the other 
broke down between the first and second periods. 
The MDC rink's machine was dispatched with a police 
escort to the Garden and the game went on with minor 

has diminished to approximately 1 .7 million from the two mil- 
lion peak for the 1971-72 season. Much of the reduction 
affected general skating, which was down about 261 ,000. 
The rinks furnished a variety of skating activity, including boys 
and girls hockey, classes for speed-skating, figure-skating, 
handicapped children and school physical education pro- 
grams. Public skating was assigned approximately 48 hours 
weekly at each rink and rental use about 52 hours. 

Off-season, 16 rinks were utilized for diversified summer 
fun, such as day camps, tennis, jogging, street hockey, bas- 
ketball and social programs. Roller skating was inaugurated at 
the Dorchester rink by a neighborhood youth group. In an 
outstanding program at the East Boston rink adjacent to Con- 
stitution Beach, the North Shore Recreational and Social Cen- 
ter sponsored an evening street hockey league for 240 adults 
in addition to 845 young participants in varied day camp activ- 
ity and community events. On the second floor of the beach 
bathhouse, a summer recreation program was initiated by Girl 
Scouts of several communities who shared rink use, sailing 
and other recreation with the North Shore group. Water safety 
instruction, workshops and field trips were among other Girl 
Scout activities. 

The convenience of urban skiing in the Parks District con- 
tinues as a boon to winter sports fans, although marginal snow 
conditions shortened the 1975-76 season. Cross-country 
skiing was available for the second year at the Martin Golf 
Course in Weston, operated by Lincoln Guide Service. The 
facilities offered rental equipment, instruction, lighted touring 
tracks and man-made snow when necessary. Attendance of 
5000 included high school and employee groups and skiers 
from as far away as Cape Cod and Springfield. At Ponkapoag 
Golf Course in Blue Hills Reservation, Wilderness Trips fur- 
nished ski instruction and equipment rental. Floodlighted night 
skiing is a big feature at Blue Hills Ski Area, where 25,000 

WOODSY SETTING is a prime natural asset at Cutler 
Park in Needham and Dedham where unspoiled tranquility 
is found hardly nine miles from downtown Boston. 

used the lifts and as many attended the ski school. The area is 
fully-equipped with artificial snow-making apparatus, a double 
chair lift, two J-bars and two rope lifts. 

In the 5700-acre Blue Hills Reservation three active envi- 
ronmental and nature centers are offering stimulating educa- 
tion and wholesome recreation for classroom groups and 
outdoor enthusiasts. Chickatawbut Hill, a former Army Nike 
base converted into an environmental education center in 
1 975, has conducted 1 40 programs and courses attended by 
2707 participants of all ages during 1976, nearly one-half 
consisting of school groups. Workshops for teachers and 
youth leaders were also provided. Trailside Museum was vis- 
ited by 68,600, including 16,700 pupils from schools of the 
Parks District. Activity programs ranged from theme nature 
walks on week-ends to such special events as a Halloween 
night hike, a honeybee week-end and maple sugaring. Adult 
courses were conducted in ecology, birdlife and orphan ani- 
mal care, as well as workshops for adult and junior naturalist 
volunteers. Both Trailside and Chickatawbut are managed for 
MDC by Massachusetts Audubon Society. 

Another nature-oriented facility in the Blue Hills, Ponka- 
poag Outdoor Center, was operated by Greater Boston 
YMCA. Nearly 1 0,000 participants of all ages were enrolled in 
such activity as camping, educational sessions, family week- 
end and overnight stays, day camps, maple sugaring, horse- 
back instruction and treks. 

For the 23rd year, live theater was staged at 1 locations 
in the Parks District during the summer vacation by Boston 
Children's Theater sponsored by MDC. 

Three MDC stadiums were heavily used for diversified 
activity. High schools scheduled 120 football games, two 
track meets and two graduations. Among other events were 
Gaelic football competitions, 42 rugby games and several 
drum and bugle corps contests. Athletic fields were booked 
for baseball, softball, Little League, soccer and field hockey. 
In response to growing interest in the sport, tennis courts were 
expanded to 42 which accommodated an estimated 50,000 


Groundwork has been prepared for first-phase construc- 
tion of the new Franklin Park Zoo, an innovative, year-round, 
72-acre zoological garden featuring African wildlife in natural- 
istic settings. 

The timetable is still uncertain pending adequate funding 
but planners are hopeful that work can begin next year on the 
tropical forest pavilion, to be followed by three other pavilions 
depicting a bush forest, desert and savanna. 

Architectural plans and scale models of wildlife habitats 
have been completed, as well as extensive research on char- 
acteristics and behavior of 148 species of mammals, birds 
and reptiles that will inhabit the exhibits. 

The 50-foot-high pavilions of steel and Teflon-coated 
Fibreglas will enclose 6V2 acres of exhibits and viewing and 
service areas. Outside exhibits and visitor walkways will 
spread over a 20-acre adjoining area, featuring free-running, 
natural settings inhabited by homogeneous animal communi- 
ties separated by hidden moats. Service and holding facilities 
will be housed along the perimeter of pavilions, allowing con- 
trolled access of animals to indoor or outdoor areas. 

Phasing of the new zoo is expected to extend over the 
next eight years at an estimated cost ranging up to $24 mil- 
lion, funded by Federal grants, MDC bond issues and private 
sources. The Boston Zoological Society (BZS), which man- 
ages MDC's Franklin Park Zoo, Children's Zoo and Stone Zoo 

Zoo People' Events Climaxed 
By 1 Oth BZS Birthday Party 

Boston Zoological Society's ingenuity in staging 
unusual "people" events at Franklin Park Zoo rose to 
new heights on May 23 by staging the first dinner- 
dance ever held on the zoo grounds in celebration of 
its 10th birthday. 

A huge red and white tent adjacent to A Bird's 
World'' accommodated 650 guests for the Saturday 
evening event, following a tour of the aviary, Traveling 
Zoo and scale models of the proposed African Zoo. 
The celebration continued on Sunday with family fun 
inside the tent. The birthday present was impressive, 
too, amounting to $12,000 for the African exhibit 

NEW BIRD'S WORLD exhibit demonstrates the concept 
of natural settings and unobstructed display planned for 
new Franklin Park Zoo. 

in Stoneham. has raised $1 3 million of its $6 million goal for 
natural exhibits, animals and educational graphics MDC has 
available a $5 3 million bond issue authorization, but esti- 
mates indicate additional funds may be needed for first phase 
construction A $3.9 million Federal grant is regarded as a 
strong possibility 

Meanwhile, BZS has been steadily broadening its scope of 
recreation, education, conservation and research activity and 
planning further expansion of these functions for the proiected 
African zoo 

At the Children's Zoo, recreational opportunities have wid- 
ened by providing periods of free admission each day. a pol- 
icy that will be extended to other zoos when admission fees 
become effective A fun experience for youngsters has been 
bottle feeding and other close contact with small animals 
Extensive plans to revitalize the Children's Zoo are now being 
developed Zoo facilities have been the scene of events rang- 
ing from live band concerts and animal-naming contests to 
birthday parties for children and BZS s gala 1 0th anniversary 

Emphasis on wildlife education has brought 1 700 elemen- 
tary schoolchildren to formal multi-visit classes at Franklin Park 
Zoo during the year, introducing youngsters to the world of 
animals and birds and bringing together diverse groups from 
city and suburban schools Most classes were held at the new 
"Bird s World, where the walk-through outdoor flight cage, 
open-fronted displays of live birds, mini-exhibits and class- 
room space provide a broad educational e> The 


Boston Globe 

sized at MDC zoos, highlighted by Betty Orang-utan's suc- 
cess in producing a three-pound son with the assistance of 
her mate, Stanley. Only 70 orangs have been born in captiv- 
ity in the last 1 years. 

HERCULES, 40-year-old tortoise, and friends get 
acquainted at Franklin Park's Children Zoo. The visit by 
youngsters and teacher was in conjunction with Easter Seal 
Society's communication development program for physi- 
cally handicapped children. 

teaching program is being expanded to Stone Zoo and into 
the community around Franklin Park through after-school 
school classes for children from local community agencies. 

A new educational resource was installed at Children's 
Zoo in the form of a Theatredome, a dome-shaped structure 
offering free wildlife films, literature on endangered wildlife and 
animal fact sheets. Additional new exhibits included a native 
reptile and amphibian habitat and island exhibits of baboons, 
spider monkeys and gibbons. In other educational activity, live 
animals aboard the Zoomobile trekked into classrooms and 
other locations for 187 appearances and the Traveling Zoo 
scheduled 1 70 visits to outdoor facilities in the Parks District 
during the summer vacation. The educational value of exhibits 
at Stone Zoo has been enhanced by installing new natural 
habitats in the lower Aviary and remodeling the sea lion pool. 
The latter changes were also designed to encourage breeding 
activity by providing a proper environment for the females to 

Conservation efforts have emphasized animal collections 
in breeding groups and acquisition of endangered species to 
protect them from extinction. As an example of the breeding 
policy's success, all species of primates are now rearing 

young. Eighty-five mammals were born at the zoos in the past 
year, among them an orang-utan, antelope, two African lions, 
a camel and two Siberian tigers. There are now 1 269 speci- 
mens in the entire zoo collection. 

Significant research in animal husbandry and medical care 
has been undertaken at Franklin Park Zoo's animal hospital. 
This was one of 1 zoos nationwide selected to do clinical 
research on a tranquilizer anaesthetic compound. Along with 
1 4 other zoos, the hospital has participated in a program utiliz- 
ing contraceptives techniques in large cats. The results will be 
published for international distribution by the American Asso- 
ciation of Zoo Veterinarians. In addition, the donation of equip- 
ment enabled the zoo to become one of only two in the coun- 
try with the capability to study the normal blood-gas 
components of exotic animals. 

The hospital staff, assisted by volunteer medical special- 
ists, has a continuing educational program for animal care. In 
its preventive medicine techniques, the entire zoo collection is 
examined quarterly for parasites and medicated as necessary. 
Approximately 1 50 animals were hospitalized during the year 
by illness or injury, with an average confinement of 1 days. 
Another 300 were examined or treated in the field. 


MDC's historic sites were among attractions tor the influx 
of visitors here for the Bicentennial celebration, especially 
Bunker Hill Battlefield and Monument and Fort Warren on 
Georges Island. 

Bunker Hill, which had its 200th anniversary observance 
in 1975, had an attendance of 30,910 visitors during the 
1976 summer tourist season and 80,878 for the fiscal year 
ending June 30. The monument and grounds are slated for 
transfer in a few months to the National Park Service as part of 
the new Boston National Historical Park. 

At Georges Island in Boston Harbor, police estimated 
upwards of 200,000 persons enjoyed its scenic and recrea- 
tion facilities and viewed Fort Warren, a Civil War fortification 
and a prison for Confederate civil and military personnel. 
During the Spanish-American War and World Wars I and II, it 
served as a mine center for protecting Boston Harbor. 

For the first full season an informative tour was available 
using electronic wireless headsets for a narrative description 
of the fort's features and history since its completion in 1 850. 
This is similar to a system installed at Bunker Hill three years 
ago. An extensive improvement program, aided by Federal 
funds, included opening of 1 2 rooms in the foil, exhibits in the 
guardhouse and a walkway along one of the ramparts offering 
magnificent views of the island and harbor. Fifteen historic 
interpretive signs were erected and 500 trees and landscap- 
ing were installed on the island grounds. 

Another Bicentennial attraction was the Quincy Home- 
stead in Quincy, where electrical and other interior work was 
completed, supplementing previous structural, exterior and 
landscaping projects. The structure was the childhood home 
of Dorothy Quincy who married John Hancock in 1775. Con- 
structed in the 1 680's and enlarged in the early 1 8th century, 
the Homestead with its handsome furnishings of two centuries 
is administered by the National Society of Colonial Dames. 

A significant restoration has been completed at Moswetu- 
set Hummock, off Quincy Shore Drive, home ground of the 
Indian tribe from which Massachusetts is believed to have 
derived its name. In preserving its original character, the work 
was limited to trail restoration, planting of trees and shrubs, a 
wooden bridge, a new channel to permit tides to flow freely 
around the Hummock and parking for 10 cars 

The Bicentennial year also saw a construction start on 
restoring Fort Independence at Castle Island. South Boston, a 
site rich in history dating back to 1634. Regarded as one of 
the oldest, continuously fortified site in the country, the instal- 
lation was originally built of logs, earthworks of mud and 
masonry made of lime from oyster shells It was rebuilt or 
substantially improved eight times, once by Lieut. Col. Paul 
Revere two years after its destruction in 1 7 76 by the British 

South Boston, is in the midst of a major restoration project, 
preparatory to opening the fort to the public. 

during their evacuation of Boston. The present granite struc- 
ture was completed in 1851. The facilities, linked to the main- 
land by a causeway since 1891. have been used also as a 
hospital and prison. 

Since acquiring Castle Island from the Federal government 
in 1962. MDC has developed low-keyed recreation activities 
and has now embarked on a $857,000 first-phase restoration 
program in preparation for reopening the fort to the public as 
part of the Boston Harbor Islands State Park The initial phase 
calls for concrete waterproofing and restoring earthern ram- 
parts, installing a walkway overlooking Boston Harbor, prepar- 
ing gun casemate rooms for exhibits and constructing utility 

A dramatic reenactment of the British evacuation of Bos- 
ton in 1 776 was staged at Castle Island, marking the event's 
200th anniversary, complete with cannonfire. fireworks simu- 
lating bursting shells and small boats carrying British troops A 
colorful pageant and parade to Dorchester Heights, site of 
Colonial fortifications, climaxed the observance 

Fort Independence has also been the scene of archeologi- 
cal digs for historic artifacts Similar activity is underway at 
MDC's Peddocks Island and the interior and exterior grounds 
of Fort Warren on Georges Island 

Through the generosity of donors. MDC acquired and 
placed on display five dioramas portraying battles that precipi- 
tated the Revolutionary War Three dioramas exhibited at the 
Saltonstall State Office Building showed in minute detail the 
Battle of Lexington Green, the Battle at Concord Bridge and 
the British Retreat from Lexington-Concord The others, show- 
ing British and Colonial troops arrayed in the Battle of Bunker 
Hill, were permanently exhibited at Bunker Hill Monument 


Extensive improvements and maintenance work on MDC's 
1 68-mile network of parkways and roadways were accom- 
plished during 1 976, designed for greater motorist and pedes- 
trian safety and smoother traffic flow. 

Preparations moved ahead also toward much-needed 
replacement or reconstruction of several heavily-traveled 
bridges, weakened by age or by a shift from an original desig- 
nation for pleasure vehicles to general traffic and heavy trucks 
in excess of design capacity. 

The roadway program covered a wide range, including 
resurfacing, reconstruction, guard rails, highway lighting, 
traffic signals, a pedestrian overpass and electronic-eye warn- 
ing signs to prevent trucks from being stuck beneath parkway 
underpasses or bridges, causing massive traffic jams. The 
warning system is expected to forestall an annual average of 
100 such accidents caused mostly by out-of-state drivers 
unfamiliar with restrictions or careless in observing posted 

Following a successful experiment at one location, a 
$57,745 contract has been awarded to install 1 more flash- 
ing neon devices on Memorial Drive, Storrow Drive and Sol- 
diers Field Road. The equipment utilizes a laser beam at a 
1 2-foot level which activates flashing lights on a sign bearing 
the message, "Truck Warning — Bridge Too Low — Take 
Exit." The sign locations allow drivers to take an exit before 
reaching a low-elevation structure. 

An inventory and field inspection of MDC's 87 bridges has 
been completed as required for future Federal funds, with a 
finding that many were in need of repair work and some 
required reconstruction or replacement. About one-half of the 
structures are eligible for Federal grants. 

Design work has already begun on a multi-million-dollar 
reconstruction of General Lawrence Bridge spanning Mystic 
River at Veterans Memorial Parkway, Medford, near Route 93 
expressway. Major structural and electrical repairs are sched- 
uled in 1977 for Dorchester Bay Bridge on Morrissey Boule- 
vard at an estimated cost of $300,000. Both projects will be 
performed under MDC contracts. 

Through a cooperative effort with the State Department of 
Public Works (DPW), substantial Federal funds will be tapped 
for vitally-needed bridge replacement and other projects. As 
part of this program the DPW has begun design work on 
rebuilding the superstructure of Wellington Bridge carrying 
Route 28-Fellsway traffic over Mystic River at the Somerville- 
Medford line, where emergency repair projects have kept the 
bridge in service in recent years. Similarly, DPW will undertake 
the design phase soon on Harvard Bridge over the Charles 
River, preparatory to replacement of the superstructure. Other 
DPW-MDC projects under construction are Bussey Street 

Officer Willard Hardigan. MDC 

FAMED MEMORIAL DRIVE, lined by an arbor of syca- 
more trees, preserves scenic parkway features on the 
Charles River shoreline. 

Bridge over Mother Brook in Dedham costing $190,000 and 
the River Street Bridge in the Hyde Park section of Boston, 
$234,500, both with Federal aid. 

Twenty-eight contracts for roadway and safety improve- 
ments were in effect during fiscal 1976 amounting to $3.7 
million, including three awarded in 1975 and completed this 
year and another still in progress. The latter, due for comple- 
tion in a few months, is a $967,644 project on a 3000-foot 
section of Quincy Shore Drive for reconstruction work, a 
median strip, sidewalk, bicycle path, pedestrian lights and 
other improvements. Reconstruction of a 1 6-mile stretch of 
Mystic Valley Parkway in Arlington was completed at a cost of 
$282,684 and also a resurfacing job on a 1 '/2-mile section of 
Memorial Drive, Cambridge, for $391 ,041 . A number of 
smaller roadway and sidewalk jobs were also finished. 

As an important safety measure, a $357,235 pedestrian 
overpass was completed over Morrissey Boulevard at Pope's 
Hill Street, Dorchester, accommodating pupils attending an 
adjacent school and others visiting nearby Tenean Beach. 

Attention was devoted to better lighting for motorists and 
pedestrians. A major street-lighting project was begun on 
Veterans of Foreign Wars Parkway, West Roxbury, replacing 
an outmoded 40-year-old system along a three-mile section, 
where 367 laminated wooden standards will be installed to 
blend with the parkway environment. Improved pedestrian- 
walk lighting has been completed along the Riverway, 
between Huntington and Brookline avenues, Boston, at a cost 
of $42,670. Within a few months a construction start is 
scheduled on a $259,509 lighting system on the Charles 
River Embankment walkways between B.U. Bridge and Lever- 
ett Circle, Boston. 

An intensive study on updating and providing new traffic 
lights on MDC roadways is in progress to improve highway 
safety, with a final report due next year. In another facet of 
efforts to safeguard the public, more than three miles of guard 
rails have been placed in various locations at a cost of 


Police, Plane, Tow Truck 
Aid Expressway Traffic 

A new technique for alleviating tieups on a 7 '/2-mile stretch 
of Central Artery and Southeast Expressway has been 
launched by Metropolitan District Police, highlighting efforts to 
improve flow of peak hour traffic in the Greater Boston area. 

Aimed at rapid removal of disabled vehicles, the system 
combines aerial observation for prompt spotting of break- 
downs and accidents, heavy-duty police cruisers equipped 
with push-bars, motorcycle officers and two radio-equipped 
tow trucks operated by MDC's Central Services Division. For 
truck breakdowns, heavy tow equipment is also available. 

In its first four months operation, police officials credit the 
operation for a significant reduction of major tieups caused by 
disabled vehicles, which create massive congestion and traffic 
back-up into other roadways. During this period, there were 
1 687 responses by emergency units for towing and pushing 
vehicles stranded by flat tires, empty gas tanks and mechani- 
cal troubles or disabled by accidents. The expressway units 
are available between 6:30 and 9:30 A.M. and 3:30 and 
6:30 P.M. MDC has police jurisdiction over the area, while 
the State Department of Public Works is responsible for 

Among the participants in the expressway assignment are 
the Traffic Oriented Patrol Squad (TOPS) and an officer 
observing traffic from the air, both new functions inaugurated 
last year. The 62-man TOPS unit deals with high priority traffic 
problems and serves as a mobile force for various emergen- 
cies. The flying officer flashes reports to headquarters on 
traffic problems anywhere in the MDC system and transmits 
information on travel conditions to motorists via a Boston radio 
station which supplies the aircraft and pilot 

The police force coped with heavy demands during the 
year imposed by its participation in Boston's Phase 2 school 
desegregation program, huge crowds at major Bicentennial 
events, emergency assistance to other police jurisdictions and 
an intensive crackdown on drinking problems at beaches At 
times, the entire manpower was on duty, with days off can- 
celed on all shifts. The undermanned force has been reduced 
1 62 men below its authorized strength of 665 by hiring 

Nearly 300 men were supplied at the beginning of Bos- 
ton's 1975-76 school year. The number was gradually 
reduced during the first few months and ultimately fell off 
entirely, except for occasional assistance Overtime costs and 
other special expense were compensated by a 5675,000 allo- 
cation from state funds 

Crowd control at Bicentennial summertime celebrations 
posed a big challenge, particularly a turnout of 400.000 on 
July 4th for the spectacular Esplanade concert conducted by 
Arthur Fiedler at Hatch Shell and a dramatic fireworks display 

Bob LaPree 

recognition for its expertise. On the Merrimack River at 
Manchester, N.H., MDC Police scuba divers are shown on 
July 1 as they recovered a murder weapon linked to the 
slaying of a Tewksbury doctor, his wife and son. The gun 
proved to be vital evidence in the investigation and prosecu- 
tion of the murder case. 

on the Charles River The 1 60-man police detail was credited 
for an outstanding performance in managing massive traffic 
congestion and attendance, described as the largest for any 
event in Boston history. 

On the following week-end. full police manpower was 
mobilized to handle crowd and traffic control for Saturday's 
international parade of sailing ships in Boston Harbor, known 
as "Operation Sail.'' and the Sunday visit by Britain's Queen 
Elizabeth MDC officers also |0ined in stringent security 
required for the Queen and her husband. Prince Philip. The 
huge influx of spectators had considerable impact on MDC 
facilities and roadways under its jurisdiction 

Frequent police involvement in visits by President Ford 
and other dignitaries led to participation by an MDC captain in 
a Dignitary Protection Seminar in Washington, sponsored by 
the FBI and US Secret Service 

MDC Police responded to numerous emergency calls from 
other agencies, such as disorders at the State House. Middle- 
sex House of Correction. Charles Street Jail, various cities and 
towns, as well as Boston racial outbreaks and a rear-end tram 
collision near MBTA's Charles Street station which miured 
scores of passengers 

An important role was played by police when an ice iam 
caused a freak flood at Moody Street Dam on the Charles 


SPECIAL UNITS of Metropolitan Police are patrol boats 
assigned to extensive MDC waterways and mounted police 
for surveillance of park reservations and crowd control. 

River in Waltham. Officers manned amphibious vehicles to 
assist in breaking up the ice and provided helicopter observa- 
tion, while other units warned people in the threatened area. 

Disturbances and extensive littering by liquor and beer 
cans and bottles brought on hundreds of arrests for violating 
rules against alcoholic beverages at beaches, mostly at 
Nahant. One indignant judge imposed an unusual sentence 
requiring cleanup work at Nahant Beach, while another gave 
defendants a choice between a fine and picking up litter at the 
same beach. Most offenders chose the cleanup task. Numer- 
ous arrests were made also at Winthrop and Nantasket 

Stringent provisions of a new law requiring highly- 
advanced training of officers manning ambulances have 
resulted in phasing out ambulance service and relying on certi- 
fied private or municipal resources as a more practical alterna- 
tive. MDC vehicles are being used only in cases of minor inju- 
ries or illness or when no other ambulance is available or in the 
event of a major catastrophe in which sufficient certified 
ambulances are unavailable. 

The MDC Police Academy has conducted its first citizen- 
oriented course in cardio-pulmonary techniques for use prior 
to arrival of professional personnel. The program's emphasis 
will be shifted in the coming year to training of police officers. 

During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1 976, Metropolitan 
District Police investigated over 5800 crimes, 2807 of which 
were relatively serious. Close to 50% of the crimes were 
closed by an arrest. 

In the same period, police handled 4427 motor vehicle 
accidents. In their efforts to prevent accidents police issued 
over 27,000 motor vehicle citations. Police recovered 1420 
stolen vehicles of which 1 397 were taken from MDC road- 
ways. Stolen property recovered was valued at nearly $2 mil- 
lion. On 216 occasions blood or vital medical supplies were 
carried from and to area hospitals. 

Officer's Ocean Swim 
Nets Capture of Suspect 

A unique arrest has been written into the annals of 
police history involving an elusive, fleeing teen-ager 
wanted on breaking and entering charges and a 
determined MDC officer. 

The pursuit had reached Revere Beach, where the 
youth leaped from the seawall and waded into the 
ocean, concealed by darkness and heavy rain. Unde- 
terred, the officer stripped to the waist and plunged 
into the water. Five minutes later, he swam ashore, 
towing the suspect behind him. 

A major activity of the Metropolitan Police is assistance to 
cities and towns. On over 3100 occasions assistance was 
provided to other police departments and 15,500 assists to 
the general public. 

Demands on police patrol boats continue to grow, reflect- 
ing constantly increasing use of MDC's harbor islands and 
Charles and Mystic rivers. Visitors voyaging to Georges, Lov- 
ell's and Peddocks islands during the 1 976 season exceeded 
300,000, according to police estimates, requiring stepped-up 
police activity on the islands and in harbor waters. Six officers 
manning two patrol boats made 481 7 trips to the islands, 
mainly Georges, representing a 16% increase over 1975. A 
great variety of services was performed, including 21 persons 
rescued, 106 search and rescue missions, 102 persons 
assisted, 36 transported to hospitals, first aid rendered to 
1020 persons, 93 boats towed and 410 boat inspections. 
These combined statistics rose 34% above the previous 


How MDC Organization Delivers Regiona 

The Metropolitan District Commission's concept is based 
on the belief that communities in Metropolitan Boston can 
derive greater benefits with more efficiency and lower costs 
through regional operation of parks, water and sewerage 

It has become increasingly evident that many facets of 
urban life and the environment can be developed and adminis- 
tered most effectively without regard for municipal boundaries. 

This trend originated in 1 889 with the creation of the Met- 
ropolitan Sewerage Commission as the nation's first legally- 
constituted metropolitan district. Then came the Metropolitan 
Parks District in 1 893 and the Metropolitan Water Board in 
1895. The three agencies were consolidated into the Metro- 
politan District Commission in 1 91 9 for greater efficiency and 

MDC operations are governed by a five-member Commis- 
sion. A Commissioner named by the Secretary of Environmen- 
tal Affairs, subject to the Governor's approval, serves as full- 
time executive and administrative head of the agency. Four 
part-time Associate Commissioners appointed by the Gover- 
nor join the Commissioner at weekly meetings in setting pol- 
icy, approving contracts and participating in decisions on 
departmental operations. The Commissioner and Associate 
Commissioners each have an equal vote, except that "con- 
currence of the Commissioner and of not less than two Asso- 
ciate Commissioners shall be required for the execution of 
contracts and of such other official actions of the Commission 
as may be required by law.'' 

The Reorganization Act of 1 969 establishing a cabinet 
system placed MDC under the jurisdiction of the Executive 
Office of Environmental Affairs. 

As a department of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 
MDC is under the jurisdiction of the Governor and Legislature, 
including approval of its operations budget and bond issues 
for capital construction. 

To keep cities and towns informed about activities, public 
hearings are required annually for municipal officials in the 
Parks, Sewerage and Water Districts regarding improvements, 
extensions, new facilities and financial data 

The organizational structure includes five administrative or 
staff units: Commission Secretary, General Counsel, Commis- 
sioner's Office, Special Projects and Central Services 

Major support services are assigned to the Central Ser- 
vices Division. These include purchase and maintenance of 
motorized equipment, bulk purchase of supplies, sign produc- 

tion, maintenance of MDC headquarters building, police sta- 
tions and Commission-owned homes and acquiring special 
equipment for emergency operations. Central Services crews 
operate two tow trucks for prompt removal of disabled vehi- 
cles from the Central and Southeast expressways to minimize 
traffic backup during peak hours. An additional tow truck and 
two road service vans are available for further emergency use 
An extra-heavy-duty tow truck is on standby for handling large 
trucks and removing vehicles from waterways 

Departmental operations are performed by seven divi- 
sions: Engineering, Sewerage, Water. Parks. Police. Environ- 
mental Planning and Environmental Quality. These divisions 
report to the department's Chief Engineer 

An in-house Project Analysis Board reviews proposed proj- 
ects and submits recommendations to the Commission. A 
Land Board, another m-house unit, establishes priorities for 
land acquisition and recommends action on land use. sales, 
parks development and related matters 

All legal aspects of the agency's functions are supervised 
by the Office of General Counsel, such as drafting legal opin- 
ions, contracts, proposed legislation, directives and rules and 
regulations, dealing with public bidding procedure, conducting 
or participating in quasi-judicial hearings in the areas of per- 
sonnel, labor relations and police administration, and advising 
the Commission on various questions of law 

The legal process of land takings, easements and convey- 
ances is performed by the Right of Way Section for recrea- 
tional, flood control, sewerage and water supply purposes 
Permits, easements, deeds and other types of instruments are 
also processed, along with maintaining and updating a land 
inventory The section has an enforcement unit which deals 
with encroachment on MDC lands, pollution of rivers and 
streams and other similar violations 

A Planning Section is primarily concerned with park and 
recreational development, roadway system improvements, 
landscaping and open space acquisition 

The Financial Office operates a data-processing unit for 
payroll and other departmental uses, processes all receipts 
and disbursements, maintains fiscal records and serves as the 
department's accounting office Interviews and job placement 
functions are handled by a Personnel Office, which also nego- 
tiates collective bargaining agreements, maintains personnel 
records, co-ordinates enrollment in training courses and con- 
ducts an alcoholic rehabilitation program 

A reference library serves as a source of histoncal data. 
publications, reports and other information 




The Engineering Division is responsible for planning, engi- 
neering and supervising construction of facilities for the Water 
and Sewerage divisions, flood control and drainage and major 
Parks District projects. The division's chief construction engi- 
neer also has administrative management and engineering 
oversight of the Parks Engineering Section, which was for- 
merly a separate division. Completed facilities are turned over 
to operating divisions for maintenance and operation. 

Nineteen contracts amounting to $16.6 million were 
awarded during fiscal 1 976. Work was still in progress or con- 
tracts were completed totaling $6.4 million for eight projects 
begun in prior years. Additionally, work was in progress on the 
new Charles River Dam under a $35 million contract in coop- 
eration with the Army Corps of Engineers which is supervising 
the project. 

Parks Engineering Section personnel are engaged in 
Parks District projects involving designing, engineering ser- 
vices, contract document preparation and supervision of new 
construction, as well as major repairs of park and recreation 
facilities, roadways, bridges, drawbridges and locks, street 
lighting and traffic controls. Upon completion, new facilities 
come under the jurisdiction of the Parks Division for operation 
and routine maintenance. Thirty-eight contracts were awarded 
for Parks District work during the fiscal year totaling $5.6 mil- 
lion. There were 16 additional contracts previously awarded 
and still active or completed in fiscal 1 976, amounting to $4.4 

Other Engineering Division activities consist of land sur- 
veys, hydraulic investigations of water and sewer lines; river 
hydraulics, materials testing, water and sewage analysis, 
photographic work and aerial photography, architectural ser- 
vices, landscaping, park and recreational developments; legal 
assistance, preparation of contracts, review and selection of 
consultant submittals, and participation on committees for 
land acquisition, solid waste, water resources, environmental 
impacts, water quality and project analyses. 


The purpose of the Water Division is to furnish pure water 
to local distribution systems of communities in the Metropoli- 
tan Water District and such other cities and towns as can be 
reasonably supplied. 

Twenty-five communities receive their entire water supply 
and seven a partial supply, with an area of 309 square miles 

and 1 ,836,240 population. The City of Woburn (pop. 35,330) 
was admitted as the 33rd member in 1 972 as a partial user, 
but will not be linked to the system until completion of a new 
pipeline and pumping facilities. The Town of Wellesley (pop. 
26,590), which became the 34th member in 1974, has a 
"readiness to serve" agreement and plans to rely on its own 
supply for the present. Ten communities in Central Massachu- 
setts located near MDC reservoirs and aqueducts are supplied 
in whole or in part under special agreements. 

The Water District's sources are the Quabbin, Wachusett 
and Sudbury watersheds and the runoff of the Ware River 
watershed during certain periods. Storage reservoirs on these 
watersheds have a capacity of 495 billion gallons, principally 
at Quabbin Reservoir with its capacity of 412 billion gallons 
and Wachusett's 67 billion gallons. 

The water supply is delivered to Metropolitan Boston 
through 131 miles of aqueducts and tunnels and distributed 
via approximately 260 miles of pipelines, mostly by gravity 

Facilities under control of the Water Division include six 
storage reservoirs with 467 square miles of tributary 
watershed, a water surface of 30,000 acres, four hydro-elec- 
tric power stations, 1 6 miles of high tension power transmis- 
sion lines, 1 2 distribution pumping stations to service high 
elevations and 1 6 distribution reservoirs with a capacity of 3. 1 
billion gallons. 

Eight contracts for construction work, maintenance or 
repairs were awarded during fiscal 1 976 for a total of 
$461 ,534. Work was completed on eight contracts awarded 
in 1975 totaling $199,013. 


An intricate sewerage and treatment system is under the 
jurisdiction of the Sewerage Division. Its vast sewage collec- 
tion and pollution abatement functions require maintenance 
and operation of 1 2 pumping stations, two treatment plants, 
four pre-treatment headworks, a detention and chlorination 
station for combined stormwater and sewage overflows along 
Charles River Basin, a pre-treatment and chlorination station 
for combined overflows at Mystic River Basin and 226 miles of 
trunk sewers. 

Forty-three cities and towns covering 406 square miles, 
with 2,180,074 inhabitants and a contributing population of 
1 ,980,083, are members of the Sewerage District. Wastewa- 
ter flows through 5146 miles of local sewers connected to 
MDC trunk lines at 1812 locations, an increase of 58 miles 
over the previous year. The municipal lines link 400,694 indi- 
vidual connections with the MDC system, an increase of 2953 


in the past year. Per capita cost of sewerage operations in 
1 976 was $8. 1 7 of which $5 was for maintenance and oper- 
ations and $3.17 for debt service 

Average daily sewage load was 468 million gallons and 
the 24-hour maximum flow was 706 mgd passing through 
primary treatment and chlorination at Deer Island and Nut 
Island plants before a discharge via outfalls into outer Boston 
Harbor. The process provides screening and grit removal, pre- 
chlorination, pre-aeration, primary sedimentation and post 
chlorination. Raw sludge is treated by thickening and high rate 
disgestion prior to discharge, producing a by-product of meth- 
ane gas utilized for electrical power and heating. 

There were 1 5 contracts awarded by the division or in 
force during fiscal 1 976 totaling $632,544, including 
$317,1 25 for inflow/infiltration studies related to three sewer 
relief line projects. 


The Parks and Recreation Division is responsible for 
maintenance of extensive Parks District property and supervis- 
ing recreation programs for the benefit of 37 cities and towns 
and a population of 1 ,984,940 within the district. 

Under its jurisdiction are nearly 1 5,000 acres of parkland, 
including five major reservations and 1 7 miles of beaches, 26 
skating rinks, 1 9 swimming pools, three 1 8-hole golf courses, 
three harbor islands, the Charles, Mystic and Neponset rivers 
within the District, 1 68 miles of roadway and a wide variety of 
other recreation facilities and parks. 

Its Recreation Services Section develops, schedules and 
oversees recreational use of facilities, such as rinks, pools, 
Hatch Shell, stadiums, athletic fields, golf courses, special 
events and miscellaneous recreational activity 

The division also operates locks and drawbridges and has 
administrative and maintenance responsibility for the Franklin 
Park and Stone zoological parks. 


Primary mission of the Police Division is protection of MDC 
property and people using its facilities and patrol of 1 68 miles 
of MDC roadways and 1 8 miles of the Northeast, Southeast 
and Central Artery expressways within Suffolk County, which 
are maintained by the State Department of Public Works The 
division also has full police powers in any community where 
MDC has property. 

Its broad responsibility for law enforcement at parklands, 
waterways, harbor islands and roadways requires highly diver- 
sified functions and equipment Daily use of a K-9 unit, detec- 

tives, narcotics officers, mounted police and boat officers ena- 
bles the force to patrol a widespread and diversified 
environment. Patrol officers with specialized capabilities, such 
as scuba diving and bomb disposal, are often called from their 
regular duties to perform these hazardous functions Special 
equipment, such as breathalyzers, radar, underwater com- 
munications and police boats are used regularly by MDC 

A Traffic Oriented Patrol Squad (TOPS) deals primarily 
with enforcement at high accident locations and top priority 
traffic problems. TOPS functions also as an effective mobile 
force for quick response to serious emergencies anywhere in 
Metropolitan Boston. Aerial surveillance of the traffic scene is 
in effect during weekday peak hours, utilizing a plane fur- 
nished by a local radio station The flying policeman provides 
radio broadcasts on traffic conditions to the public and informs 
police headquarters about disabled vehicles, accidents and 
tieups as a method of expediting response and easing traffic 


Responsibility for a wide range of environmental concerns 
has been assigned to the Environmental Planning Division 
The agency administers the Federal and State Environmental 
Policy Acts for MDC. such as preparation of environmental 
impact reports and assessments and review of similar reports 
by other agencies affecting MDC facilities It also has prime 
responsibility for water and wastewater planning and program 
implementation Other services include representing MDC on 
Federal, State and regional committees, land use planning, 
assistance on regulatory permit procedures and consultant 
contract administration and management 

The division coordinated and managed the newly-com- 
pleted wastewater study for the Eastern Massachusetts Metro- 
politan Area in conjunction with Army Corps of Engineers 
Study recommendations for pollution control facilities totaling 
$855 million are now being implemented 


Specialized services dealing with environmental problems 
affecting the air. land and water are furnished by the Environ- 
mental Quality Division Its primary functions are developing 
and managing proiects designed to protect and improve the 
environmental quality of the areas under MDC jurisdiction, 
monitoring water quality of the metropolitan rivers and their 
tributaries and MDC beaches and pools and advising MDC on 
matters affecting the environment 


As a regional public agency, the Metropolitan District 
Commission is financed primarily by assessments on 54 
communities which are members of one or more of its three 

Additional funds come from the State Highway Fund, state 
allocations for certain flood control projects and miscellaneous 
revenue such as fees, rentals, licenses, permits, fines, penal- 
ties, sales and Federal reimbursements or grants. 

The operating budget and bond issues for capital con- 
struction are subject to approval by the Governor and 

Principal financing sources for the three districts are the 


PARKS — Recreational capital construction by bond 
issues, amortized by assessments based on property tax val- 
uations of communities in the district; maintenance of boule- 
vards and reservations and police costs by 67% from the 
State Highway Fund and 33% by member cities and towns, 
with one-third based on population and two-thirds on valua- 
tion; highway and bridge construction by legislative allocations 
from state highway bond issues. 

WATER — Charge of $240 per million gallons, with spe- 
cial provisions for communities outside the Water District. 

SEWERAGE — Debt requirements are assessed on the 
basis of total population and a "population equivalent" for- 
mula for contributing industries, commercial establishments 
and other uses, effective for 1976. This replaces previous 
assessments based on capacity of municipal sewers con- 
nected to the MDC sewerage system. Maintenance and oper- 
ation expenses are apportioned in relation to total population. 
For 1 977, this will be shifted to residential population actually 
served by the system and a "population equivalent" charge 
for industries, etc. 

For the fiscal year ending June 30, 1 976, the Commission 
spent $47,496, 1 47 on maintenance and operations, a 
decrease of $386,523 below 1975. Interest and principal 
payments on bonds issued for capital projects and water fund 
deficits amounted to $26,812,727, up $2,136,436 over 
1 975. The combined expenditure was $74,308,874, a rise of 
$1 ,749,91 3 over the previous year. 

An additional $3,014,692 was expended for highway 
construction from state highway bond funds and for certain 
flood control projects from special authorizations, which do 
not reflect in assessments on MDC cities and towns. 

The $77,323,566 total represented 61 % for maintenance 
and operations, 35% for MDC bonded debt and 4% for 
expenditures from state bond funds. 






$ 810,777 






$ 7,275,634 





$ 834,376 



$ 5,650,234 







•Includes cost of MDC Police operations. 

Note — An additional $3,014,692 was spent in 1976 and $4,251 ,973 in 1975 for highway construction projects financed by state highway bond issues and flood 

control and other special authorizations financed by state General Fund bond issues rather than assessments on MDC cities and towns. 














1976 1975 

$16,767,827 $15,544,558 

18,881,306 16,448,453 

24,144,492 20,293,639 









37 Cities & Towns 
43 Cities & Towns 
32 Cities & Towns 

Admissions. Sales. 
Fees, etc 

Note: Income figures for Parks. Sewerage and Water differ slightly from assessment table, due to various adjustments Sale of power, licenses, fees, concession 
permits, etc.. do not accrue to the Commission for re-use, but rather flow directly into the appropriate fund and thereby reduces assessments against cities 
and towns. Federal reimbursements ordinarily have the same effect 

•Represents water fund deficit in 1974. This is anticipated to be the last bond authorization to cover such deficits 

(In millions of dollars) 



$ 85.671 











$ 130.998 
137 739 
117 663 

41 481 
39 997 
37 128 

267 512 
283 382 
261 174 
261 566 
265 193 
248 450 

'Includes Water Fund deficit debt. 























4 " 












Highway Engineering 










Parks & Parks Eng. 























































$ 578,773 

$ 600,493 

$ 524,976 





Highway Eng. 




Parks & 

Parks Eng. 




















•Includes permanent, 

temporary and seasonal 


as of June 30. 



Cities and Towns 


Lynnfield Water District 

$ 457,736.64 


















Parks and Boulevards 
$ 506,656.50 

















539.624 91 




Sewerage System 

$ 456.957.51 




















169,684 92 

436.780 17 

392.633 71 
102.212 21 
269.868 41 
173.318 23 
352.821 91 
$18,868,791 49 


$ 1,421.350 65 

50,122 22 









824.402 17 




1,559.381 21 

361,083 23 





31.948 56 






81.860 48 


760.844 30 

3.005.913 41 



2.526.164 34 



1.042.543 85 

476.569 92 


698.810 45 

130.271 81 

216.835 34 

663.493 81 

1 10.212 78 

2.103.078 59 

1.068.730 00 

597.038 67 

328.606 26 

303.104 38 

932.258 62 


620.236 41 

497.919 38 

352,821 91 

$59,677.638 64 

' Note: Assessments for 1975 were received in fiscal 1976. 


District Membership 

Parks - Water - Sewerage 

Total Members -54 

Member of all three MDC districts 

Member of two districts 
D Member of one district 
P Parks - 37 
W Water - 34 
S Sewerage - 43 

Note: Woburn and Wellesley are new members of the Water District but are not being supplied pending 
completion of connections.